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Question:

From Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, USA:

My wife and I have recently had a new baby whose blood sugar at birth sugar level was practically zero. It was so low that the lab couldn't even get a reading without diluting the sample. Since then, they have put him on an IV of 10cc per hour of D50 glucose. For the last two days, his blood sugar has been staying around the 20s mg/dl [1.1 mmol/L], but will go as high as the 70s mg/dl [3.9 mmol/L] sometimes.

My wife did not have gestational diabetes during pregnancy, and I am becoming concerned that this might be something more than just the fact that he only weighed 5 pounds, and his body has not completely caught up to where he should be. Could this be a sign of hypoglycemia? Would this most likely be a case in which my son's body just needs a little time to get adjusted?

Answer:

The blood glucose levels you give for your son certainly fall within the definition of neonatal hypoglycemia. By the time you get this reply though, the doctors will have learned whether or not this is a transient phenomenon which may be related to intrauterine growth retardation or to some less common, and more lasting, disturbance of carbohydrate metabolism. The most likely of these, but still rare, could be a condition called nesidioblastosis in which there is an excessive number of insulin producing cells in the pancreas. it is relatively straightforward to treat with drugs like diazoxide or calcium channel blockers and later, perhaps, with surgery.

If you search this site for nesidioblastosis or looking through answers to questions about hypoglycemia, you will find a wealth of information. You need to talk all this over with your son's pediatrician.

DOB

DTQ-20010116090229
Original posting 25 Jan 2001
Posted to Hypoglycemia

  
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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:18
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