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Diabetic Hypoglycemia - an independent electronic journal dedicated to the advancement of hypoglycemia research and clinical management
Diabetic Hypoglycemia Volume 5, Issue 3, February 2013

Spotlight Article

It’s all in the name: what exactly is hypoglycemia?

Stephanie A Amiel

Diabetic Hypoglycemia February 2013, Volume 5, Issue 3: page 15-18


The definition of hypoglycemia remains contentious. While there is broad agreement on clinical definitions, the biochemical definition, namely the blood or plasma glucose concentration at which a person may be defined as experiencing hypoglycemia, needs to be appropriate to the circumstances and be clinically relevant. Using a definition that includes plasma glucose concentrations common in health may overestimate the clinical problem of hypoglycemia during diabetes treatments, and if used exclusively, may impede reporting of clinically important hypoglycemia in clinical trials. Glucose concentrations well within the physiological range are appropriate as a lower limit for target glucose ranges in adjusting diabetes therapies but should be differentiated from true hypoglycemia. Degrees of hypoglycemia should be identified individually in the assessment of diabetes therapies.


Keywords: hypoglycemia, clinical trials, diabetes