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J R Soc Med. 2002 Aug;95(8):381-5.

Screening for sulphonylureas in the investigation of hypoglycaemia.

Author information

1
SAS Hormone Laboratory, Clinical Laboratory, Royal Surrey County Hospital, Egerton Road, Guildford, Surrey GU2 7XX, UK. pandina.kwong@rbhc-tr.nthames.nhs.uk

Abstract

The most important cause of hypoglycaemia in the presence of high insulin and C-peptide concentrations is insulinoma. However, a similar picture arises from use of sulphonylureas, which is sometimes covert. All specimens received in two years by a supraregional assay service laboratory from adults with low glucose and inappropriately high insulin and C-peptide concentrations were tested for sulphonylureas by a radioimmunoassay that employed antibodies to glibenclamide. In sulphonylurea-positive cases a questionnaire was sent to the consultant responsible for the patient, to elicit further information. Samples from 93 adult patients met the criteria, and 34 (37%) of these gave a positive result on screening for sulphonylureas. The consultants provided further information on 31 of the 34, and in 20 the presence of a sulphonylurea was unexpected. In 10 the features were such as to raise the possibility of factitious drug ingestion. A simple screening technique applied to specimens from patients with hyperinsulinaemic hypoglycaemia indicated that, in a substantial proportion of cases, the patient was taking a sulphonylurea.

PMID:
12151486
PMCID:
PMC1279961
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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