Pediatric Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Pediatric Diabetic Ketoacidosis



Diabetic ketoacidosis is a condition that develops when the body is not able to produce enough insulin. Without insulin, glucose cannot be used for energy. Instead the body will use fat for the energy it needs.

Expanded Overview

Diabetic ketoacidosis occurs with elevated blood glucose AND urinary ketones. High ketones are acids that form when the body burns fat for energy and when there is not enough insulin.

It is important to test your child's urine when blood glucose is equal to or greater than 250 and when your child is not feeling well or is sick.


  • Missed injections
  • Illness/stress


  • Confusion
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Fruity breath odor
  • Hyperglycemia (high blood sugar)
  • High ketone levels in urine
  • Increased thirst
  • Increased urination
  • Medical emergency
  • Stomachache 
  • Vomiting / nausea


  • 6 – 12 oz water every 20 minutes
  • Retest ketones until negative
  • Insulin therapy
  • Contact your endocrinologist and/or primary care provider


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