UMEM Educational Pearls

Category: Critical Care

Title: Bedside glucose

Keywords: glucose, critically ill (PubMed Search)

Posted: 4/22/2008 by Mike Winters, MD (Updated: 10/21/2021)
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Bedside Glucometry in the Critically Ill

  • Hyperglycemia is common in critically ill patients
  • Depending on the underlying condition (e.g. DKA), you may be instituting an insulin drip and following frequent fingersticks in the ED
  • A recent study indicates that bedside glucose values may not accurately reflect serum values in approximately 15% of critically ill patients
  • This is more likely to occur in patients with poor peripheral perfusion
  • Take Home Point: Interpret bedside glucose readings with caution especially in hypotensive critically ill patients

References

Desachy A, et al. Accuracy of Bedside Glucometry in Critically Ill Patients: Influence of Clinical Characteristics and Perfusion Index. Mayo Clin Proc 2008;83:400-5.