A Tale of Marriage, Medicine and Murder

What does 'blood sugar' mean?

Find out what blood sugar means. Blood sugar is explained by Margaret McMillion - author of PERSONAL BAGGAGE

blood sugar

Blood sugar, or blood glucose, is the fuel used by cells of the body, but when there is too much sugar for the cells to use, or when sugar is unable to pass through the cell membranes and remains in the blood, it behaves like a slow-acting poison, causing kidney damage, strokes and heart attacks, impotence, visual loss, high risk of infection, nerve damage, poor circulation, and decreased sensation to the extremities. Insulin, produced by the pancreas, enables glucose to pass through cell membranes into the cells, where it is needed and can be used for energy.

Patients at home and nurses in hospitals use a blood glucose monitor to measure the level of sugar in the blood by pricking a finger to obtain a drop of blood, placing it on a testing strip, and inserting it into a glucometer. If the reading is extremely high or low, a more accurate test should be performed in a laboratory.

Insulin cannot be given by mouth, only by injection. A high level of blood glucose must be brought down gradually with frequent testing and repeated insulin injections.

In PERSONAL BAGGAGE on page 148, Penny nurses a patient with an extremely high blood glucose using insulin and both an Acu-check machine and lab sticks to monitor the level as it decreases.

Search result for 'blood sugar' in PERSONAL BAGGAGE

Chapter 13: Chapter Thirteen
"... up.” “Didn’t we put her on steroids this morning?” He flipped the chart’s pages back to his order sheet. “Yes! Steroids will elevate the WBCs and the glucose...her blood sugar is up, too. I’ll order finger sticks before meals until we see where she is. Thanks.” Penny ..."

Chapter 15: Chapter Fifteen
"...Dr. Hutton addressed him. “Your mother’s blood sugar is almost 500. I’ve been controlling her with oral hypoglycemics but she’s beyond that now. Penny will do finger sticks and give her insulin every two hours tonight.” He beckoned to Penny. “With Decadron on board it’s going to be a wild ride.” ..."
"... accompanied Dr. Hutton to the patient’s room. “Mrs. North,” Penny said, “Dr. Hutton wants me to check your blood sugar by sticking your finger. If you’ll give me your finger, I’ll do it while the doctor explains everything.” Mrs. North shook her head. “I need more ice ..."
"... filled a pitcher with ice, and removed the spray can from the narcotic cabinet. Mrs. North didn’t seem to notice when Penny pricked her finger with the lancet. Her blood sugar was 425. Returning to the desk, Penny found Barb on the edge of tears, but Dr. Hutton said, “Give ..."

"... Presently, Scales arrived. He took off his suit coat and laid it over the back of one of the desk chairs. Penny handed him Loretta’s chart, opened to the new lab values which showed her blood sugar to be dangerously high. “We haven’t been able to get a urine specimen yet,” she told him. ..."

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"In a story of evolving relationships, Margaret McMillion breathes life into her characters, especially Penny, who must find..."

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