If you have symptoms of hypoglycemia several times a week, make an appointment with your doctor. Together you can determine what's contributing to the hypoglycemia and decide what changes to make to prevent it.
Here's some information to help you get ready for your appointment.
What you can do
- Be aware of pre-appointment restrictions. For blood sugar testing, you'll need to refrain from eating or drinking anything but water for eight hours for a fasting glucose test or four hours for a pre-meal test. When you make the appointment, ask if fasting is necessary.
- Write down your symptoms and how often they occur. It may help to keep a record of low blood sugar reactions so that you and your doctor can see patterns leading to hypoglycemia.
- Write down key personal information, including major stresses or recent life changes. If you're monitoring your glucose values at home, bring a record of the glucose results, detailing the dates and times of testing.
- List medications, vitamins and supplements you take.
- Create a record of metered glucose values. Give your doctor a written or printed record of your blood glucose values, times and medication.
- Take your glucose meter with you. Some meters download recorded glucose values, which often can be done at your doctor's office.
- Write down questions to ask your doctor. Be clear about aspects of your diabetes management that you need clarified.
For diabetic hypoglycemia, questions you may want to ask include:
- How often do I need to monitor my blood sugar?
- What is my goal range?
- How do diet, exercise and weight changes affect my blood sugar?
- How can I prevent low blood sugar?
- Do I need to worry about high blood sugar? What are the signs and symptoms I need to watch out for?
- Do I need a prescription for the emergency injection of glucagon?
- I have other medical problems. How can I manage them together?
- What kind of follow-up, if any, should I expect?
Don't hesitate to ask other questions.
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions, such as:
Feb. 20, 2015
- What symptoms do you notice when you have low blood sugar?
- How often do you have these symptoms?
- What do you do to raise your blood sugar levels?
- What's a typical day's diet like?
- Are you exercising? If so, how often?
- Do your family, friends and co-workers know what to do if you have severe hypoglycemia?
- Kronenberg HM, et al. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 12th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2011. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Jan. 14, 2015.
- Cryer PE. Management of hypoglycemia during treatment of diabetes mellitus. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Jan. 14, 2015.
- Hypoglycemia (low blood glucose). American Diabetes Association. http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/treatment-and-care/blood-glucose-control/hypoglycemia-low-blood.html. Accessed Jan. 14, 2015.
- Hypoglycemia. National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse. http://diabetes.niddk.nih.gov/dm/pubs/hypoglycemia/. Accessed Jan. 14, 2015.
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