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Learn more about DKA and blood ketone monitoring

It is easy to understand the importance of blood glucose monitoring, but what about blood ketone monitoring?

Let’s begin by learning what ketones are: ketones are the by-product of fat metabolism.

As you know, in order to derive energy from the carbohydrates in the foods that we eat, the body needs insulin; in the absence of sufficient insulin, the body begins to metabolize fat and produces ketones.

Ketones can be very dangerous when the blood glucose level is high.
If the blood glucose and ketones levels continue to rise, one can get very sick very quickly.
The person begins to get dehydrated and acidotic, meaning that the body loses water and salts and the pH falls with a build up of acids, the ketones, developing DKA.

DKA is a dangerous and potentially life-threatening condition, with thousands of preventable episodes each year.


Why check blood ketones

Most DKA is preventable.

Checking blood ketones reduces the risk of DKA.
Checking blood ketones and reacting in a timely manner with extra insulin, fluids, and communication with the health care team can keep you healthy and avoid the need for emergency treatment.

The American Diabetes Association states that blood ketone testing is preferred over urine ketone testing as a more reliable method of diagnosing DKA.


Who may be at risk of developing DKA and would benefit from checking blood ketones

Type 1 diabetes patients

Type 1 diabetes patients

Children & teenagers

Children & teenagers

Insulin pump users

Insulin pump users

Pregnant women

Pregnant women

Insulin-treated type 2 diabetes patients

Insulin-treated type 2 diabetes patients


How to interpret your blood ketones results

Under 0.6 mmol/L

- under 0.6 mmol/L - normal; consider rechecking blood ketone levels in 1-2 hours if blood glucose remains elevated, above 250 mg/dL (13.9mmol/L).

0.6 - 1.5 mmol/L

- 0.6 - 1.5 mmol/L - indicates a need for extra insulin.
It is important to call or follow the rules provided by your diabetes health care team and continue to check your blood glucose and blood ketone levels in 1-2 hours

Over 1.5 mmol/L

- over 1.5 mmol/L - indicates risk of diabetic ketoacidosis.
Call your health care team IMMEDIATLY

With the new portable GlucoMen LX PLUS meter you can check blood ketones levels anyway, at home, at school, at work!

Our Values

10 core values have influenced the progress of our group.