0
We're unable to sign you in at this time. Please try again in a few minutes.
Retry
We were able to sign you in, but your subscription(s) could not be found. Please try again in a few minutes.
Retry
There may be a problem with your account. Please contact the AMA Service Center to resolve this issue.
Contact the AMA Service Center:
Telephone: 1 (800) 262-2350 or 1 (312) 670-7827  *   Email: subscriptions@jamanetwork.com
Error Message ......
ARTICLE |

Incidence and Risk Factors for Serious Hypoglycemia in Older Persons Using Insulin or Sulfonylureas

Ronald I. Shorr, MD, MS; Wayne A. Ray, PhD; James R. Daugherty, MS; Marie R. Griffin, MD, MPH
Arch Intern Med. 1997;157(15):1681-1686. doi:10.1001/archinte.1997.00440360095010.
Text Size: A A A
Published online

Background:  Our knowledge about the risk of hypoglycemia associated with diabetes treatment is derived from studies that often exclude frail, elderly persons.

Objective:  To determine the incidence and risk factors for developing serious hypoglycemia among older persons using sulfonylureas or insulin.

Methods:  We conducted a population-based, retrospective cohort study of 19 932 Tennessee Medicaid enrollees, aged 65 years or older, who used insulin or sulfonylureas from 1985 through 1989. The main end point was serious hypoglycemia defined as a hospitalization, emergency department admission, or death associated with hypoglycemic symptoms and a concomitant blood glucose determination of less than 2.8 mmol/L (<50 mg/dL).

Results:  We identified 586 persons with a first episode of serious hypoglycemia during 33 048 person-years of insulin or sulfonylurea use. The crude rates (per 100 person-years) of serious hypoglycemia were 1.23 (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.08-1.38) in users of sulfonylureas and 2.76 (95% CI, 2.47-3.06) among insulin users. Recent hospital discharge was the strongest predictor of subsequent hypoglycemia in older persons with diabetes. The adjusted relative risk of serious hypoglycemia occurring in days 1 through 30 after hospital discharge was 4.5 (95% CI, 3.5-5.7) compared with the risk associated with a hypoglycemic event occurring 366 or more days after hospital discharge. Other independent risk factors included advanced age (relative risk, 1.8; 95% CI, 1.4-2.3), black race (relative risk, 2.0; 95% CI, 1.7-2.4), and use of 5 or more concomitant medications (relative risk, 1.3; 95% CI, 1.1-1.5).

Conclusions:  In this population, the incidence of serious hypoglycemia is approximately 2 per 100 person-years, suggesting that many older adults can be safely treated with hypoglycemic drugs. Frail, elderly persons— the oldest-old, those using multiple medications, and those who are frequently hospitalized—are at a higher risk for drug-associated hypoglycemia. Such individuals may benefit from intensive education about the symptoms of hypoglycemia and close monitoring for adverse events related to diabetes treatment.Arch Intern Med. 1997;157:1681-1686

Topics

Sign in

Create a free personal account to sign up for alerts, share articles, and more.

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal

Figures

Tables

References

Correspondence

CME
Meets CME requirements for:
Browse CME for all U.S. States
Accreditation Information
The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
Note: You must get at least of the answers correct to pass this quiz.
You have not filled in all the answers to complete this quiz
The following questions were not answered:
Sorry, you have unsuccessfully completed this CME quiz with a score of
The following questions were not answered correctly:
Commitment to Change (optional):
Indicate what change(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Your quiz results:
The filled radio buttons indicate your responses. The preferred responses are highlighted
For CME Course: A Proposed Model for Initial Assessment and Management of Acute Heart Failure Syndromes
Indicate what changes(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Submit a Comment

Multimedia

Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Web of Science® Times Cited: 142

Sign in

Create a free personal account to sign up for alerts, share articles, and more.

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.

Jobs
brightcove.createExperiences();