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February 1979

Hyperglycemic Hyperosmolar Coma in a 9-Month-Old Child

Author Affiliations

From the Children's Hospital National Medical Center, Washington, DC. Dr Goldman is now with the University of Miami (Fla) School of Medicine.

Am J Dis Child. 1979;133(2):181-183. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1979.02130020073015

• Hyperglycemic hyperosmolar coma is a life-threatening emergency with a mortality much higher than that of other forms of hyperosmolarity such as hypernatremia or diabetic ketoacidosis. Despite the differences in the three conditions, present evidence suggests that correction of hyperosmolarity should proceed slowly to avoid the seizures that may occur in all three conditions.

This report describes a 9-month-old diabetic child who initially had hyperglycemic hyperosmolar coma and who is one of the youngest survivors of this syndrome in the American literature. This case report points out the limited understanding of the pathophysiology of this syndrome and the consequent problems of therapy.

(Am J Dis Child 133:181-183, 1979)

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