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VOLUME 25 , ISSUE 12 ( December, 2021 ) > List of Articles

Pediatric Critical Care

Risk Factors for Cerebral Edema and Acute Kidney Injury in Children with Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Veena Raghunathan, Ganesh Jevalikar, Maninder Dhaliwal, Dhirendra Singh, Sidharth K Sethi, Parjeet Kaur, Sunit C Singhi

Keywords : Acute kidney injury (AKI), Cerebral edema (CE), Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), Pediatric

Citation Information : Raghunathan V, Jevalikar G, Dhaliwal M, Singh D, Sethi SK, Kaur P, Singhi SC. Risk Factors for Cerebral Edema and Acute Kidney Injury in Children with Diabetic Ketoacidosis. Indian J Crit Care Med 2021; 25 (12):1446-1451.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24038

License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published Online: 17-12-2021

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2021; The Author(s).


Objectives: To study the clinical profile and risk factors of cerebral edema and acute kidney injury in children with diabetic ketoacidosis. Design: Retrospective review of medical records. Patients: Fifty consecutive patients (age <18 years) admitted to our pediatric intensive care unit with a diagnosis of diabetic ketoacidosis over 5 years. Materials and methods: Retrospective analysis of medical records was done, and data including patients’ age, sex, presenting features, biochemical profile including blood glucose, osmolality, urea, creatinine, and venous blood gas, electrolytes were recorded at admission, at 12 and 24 hours. Treatment details including fluid administration, rate of fall of glucose, time to resolution of diabetic ketoacidosis were noted. Complications such as cerebral edema and acute kidney injury were recorded. Patients with and without cerebral edema and acute kidney injury were compared. Variables that were significant on univariate analysis were entered in a multiple logistic regression analysis to determine the independent predictors for cerebral edema and acute kidney injury. Odds ratio and 95% confidence interval were calculated using SPSS version 22. Measurements and main results: Between November 2015 and 2020, 48 patients were admitted for a total of 50 episodes of diabetic ketoacidosis. Two patients had recurrent diabetic ketoacidosis. Median age was 9.5 years (range 1–17). Thirty-one patients (62%) had new-onset type I diabetes mellitus. Twenty-two patients (44%) presented with severe diabetic ketoacidosis. Cerebral edema and acute kidney injury were seen in 11 (22%) and 15 (30%) patients, respectively. On multiple logistic regression analysis, higher blood urea level, lower serum bicarbonate level, and higher corrected sodium levels at admission were identified to be variables independently associated with risk of cerebral edema. Conclusions: Higher corrected sodium, higher urea level, and lower serum bicarbonate levels at admission are predictive of cerebral edema in patients presenting with diabetic ketoacidosis. The severity of dehydration and acidosis in DKA appears to be a common factor responsible for the development of dysfunction of both brain and kidney.

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