ketone confusion

By Sally Latest Reply 2009-05-21 04:39:33 -0500
Started 2009-05-20 10:49:15 -0500

Ok, here is what is going on with me. ANY info anyone has will be much appreciated. I was (a few days ago) haveing light ketones show up in my urine. My bs was great, 100 fasting and not over 145 post meals. I figured not enough carbs, looking back on my recent meals. I upped my carbs to 110 yesterday, ketones in urine went away. I thought I had it figured out. This morning, bs was 115, but ketones in my urine was in the high color zone, plus I am having frequent urination. Are there any other things that would cause ketones besides bs issues? I unfortunately do not have insurance and money is tight, cannot see any docs. I have checked with the health dept here and they most they can offer a diabetic is sugar screenings twice a week. This is by a reg doc, not an endo, same with the only free clinic here. When I talked to them, they suggested I see an endo. So I am back to square one. Any advice at all???

12 replies

lipsie 2009-05-21 04:39:33 -0500 Report

Sally, I dunno much at all about this stuff but just wanted to wish you well, hope it all works its way out for you and you feel better. *Hugs* Love yassssss Sheila

kdroberts 2009-05-20 14:23:02 -0500 Report

Ketones are 'created' when your body burns fat for energy rather than carbohydrates. Briefly, when you don't have enough insulin in your body burns fat for energy and you spill ketones. If you eat very low carb you will spill ketones, some people on low carb diets aren't satisfied until they are. If you fast, you may spill ketones. If you are pregnant and don't eat enough, you can spill ketones. If you have LOW blood sugar you can spill ketones (opposite to when you have not enough insulin, you have too much and it's used all the glucose so burns fat). Illness and stress can cause you to spill ketones. Exercise can cause you to spill ketones.

Now, spilling ketones in your urine (ketosis) is very different to ketoacidosis because ketosis doesn't cause your blood pH to drop which is the issue with DKA. Ketosis is not (well not been shown to be) dangerous, ketoacidosis is. I would buy some fresh ketostix and monitor things and pay very carful attention to the DKA symptoms like extreme tiredness, extreme thirst, constant urination, hyperventilation, nausea and pain in the upper body. If you have multiple ones of those you really need to go to a doctor. If you have any of the following, you really need to go to the ER. Vomiting, abdominal pain, symptoms of the flu, weakness and fast/normal but deep breathing like you are gasping for air.

Sally 2009-05-20 15:34:31 -0500 Report

Thanks, at least maybe I am not in any danger. New bottle of stix is my next step, even tho these are two days old!

dianef 2009-05-20 11:26:12 -0500 Report

dehydration, stress, illness. How many times day are you testing your blood? Why are you testing your ketones all the time?

Sally 2009-05-20 15:32:58 -0500 Report

I test at least three times a day, but lately it has been more, because I am trying to get tighter control. I decided to test my ketones because I was having frequent urination and I was eating fewer carbs. I have since upped the carbs, but now my ketones are higher than when I was low carb. Blood sugar has stayed steady.

dianef 2009-05-20 11:25:57 -0500 Report

dehydration, stress, illness. How many times day are you testing your blood? Why are you testing your ketones all the time?

Sarguillo 2009-05-20 11:06:55 -0500 Report

Could your test strips have gone bad?

Here are a few rules for them:

Protect the test strips from damage that might change the results.

Do not touch the test area of the strip or allow it to touch the table.
Protect the test strips from moisture, direct sunlight and heat.
Keep the test strips in a cool, dry place but do not store in the refrigerator.
Do not remove desiccant (white packet in bottle).
Replace the bottle cap promptly and tightly.
Check the expiration date on your test strips.
Do not use if the date has passed. Use the strips within 6 months after first opening the bottle.
Do not use test strips that have discolored.

Other than that, sorry, I cant be of any help.
Good luck.

John Crowley
John Crowley 2009-05-20 11:49:06 -0500 Report

I agree with Sarg. I'd be very suspicious of your meter and strips first of all. Make sure that you have the correct code entered. Make sure your strips are not expired.

The chances of you spilling high ketones while having a blood sugar of 115 seems very small to me. I'd be worried that your blood sugar is actually very high.

Sally 2009-05-20 15:29:21 -0500 Report

I thought my monitor or the strips were bad as well. I just got back from visiting my brother who is diabetic as well and used his monitor to compare mine and we got identical readings on both monitors. So it isn't that. As far as the srips go, I just opened them two days ago and the expiration date is may 2011. My next step right now is I am going to buy another bottle of strips in case those are somehow bad. I will keep everyone updated.

John Crowley
John Crowley 2009-05-20 16:53:12 -0500 Report

So it is sounding like your blood sugar readings are accurate and your ketone readings are accurate. This is indeed a strange, though not impossible, situation.

You said you thought that maybe you were eating too few carbs. How many grams of carbs were you eating?

Sally 2009-05-20 18:23:37 -0500 Report

When I had the light ketones, I was eating around 50 carbs per day. I figured this was not enough for me, I was having the frequent urination and just not feeling real energetic. So I bought the strips, and decided to up the carbs to 100. It worked yesterday, no ketones, still good bs. But today, I have had high ketones all day, no matter what I have eaten. I just finished dinner, and kept todays total at 110 carbs divided over three meals and 2 snacks. I feel ok, so I guess I will just keep monitoring the ketones and see what happens over the weekend. Thanks for all the input.

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