Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Nonketotic Syndrome, better known as HHNS, is a very serious condition. Normally, HHNK develops inside of people at an older age. This condition usually develops inside of people with type 2 diabetes, but people with type 1 can also develop it.
HHNS develops if a person is not controlling their diabetes properly. Normally, it has to be triggered by an illness, infection, or something else.
When your blood sugar rises, your body tries to get rid of the excess sugar through urine. At the beginning, you will have to urinate much more frequently due to the increased production. After a while, your urine will normally turn into a dark color.
After this, you will start to become thirsty. However, if your urine turns dark, you need to make sure that you are drinking extra liquids. If you do not, then you are at risk of dehydration.
According to the American Diabetes Association, “If HHNS continues, the severe dehydration will lead to seizures, coma and eventually death” (ADA, 2013). If you start to have symptoms, it is extremely important that you seek medical attention right away.
If your blood sugar level is over 600 mg/dl, you need to go to a doctor right away. This is one of the key warning signs.
You might develop a dry mouth. Extreme thirst is also a key sign of HHNS. If you start to have warm skin, but you are not sweating, this could be a sign of HHNS and dehydration.
Fevers that break 100 degrees are a big warning sign. Any fever this high should be checked out due to possible illnesses. However, this can also be a sign that HHNS is developing.
Fatigue, confusion, loss of vision, hallucinations, and weakness inside of parts of your body are all signs as well according to the ADA (ADA, 2013).
HHNS can a take a few days to a week or so to completely develop. You should also be aware of DKA if you are having extreme blood pressure levels.
HHNS develops when a person is not taking care of their body properly. If your blood sugar levels are consistently high, then you are at risk of developing this condition.
In order to prevent this disease from developing, it is best that you track your blood sugar throughout the day. Normally, people will check it several times a day, especially before and after meals.
This is a great way to start tracking if you are keeping your blood sugar inside of its target range. You should talk to your doctors about a sick day plan. This will help you to be prepared for times that your body will be under a lot of stress.
Overall, you are able to prevent HHNS if you take the time to track your blood sugar properly. Eating a healthy diet at consistent times will help you to control your blood glucose levels. Also, exercising regularly will help you manage your diabetes.
Speak to your doctor right away if you believe that you have developed HHNS.
American Diabetes Association. (2013). Hyperosmolar hyperglycemic nonketotic syndrome (HHNS). American Diabetes Association. Retrieved from http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/complications/hyperosmolar-hyperglycemic.html?referrer=https://www.google.com/