SGLT 2 inhibitor induced euglycemic ketoacidosis

  • Dr. Dhivahar G. Consultant, Critical Care Medicine, GEM Hospital and Research Center, Tamil Nadu, India
  • Dr. Shankar Balasubramanian Registrar, Surgical Gastroenterology, GEM Hospital and Research Center, Tamil Nadu, India
  • Dr Raghunath D. Consultant, Critical Care Medicine, GEM Hospital and Research Center, Tamil Nadu, India
  • Dr. Shivanshu Misra Consultant Surgical Gastroenterologist and Advanced Laparoscopic Surgeon, GEM Hospital and Research Center, Tamil Nadu, India
Keywords: Empagliflozin, Euglycemic ketoacidosis, SGLT2 inhibitor, Whipple’s surgery


SGLT2 inhibitors are being increasingly prescribed for the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus. Apart from lowering HbA1c, they are also potentially beneficial in reducing body weight and blood pressure. The awareness among Indian doctors of the potentially fatal complication of SGLT2 inhibitor induced diabetic ketoacidosis may not be widespread. To complicate things further, the blood glucose levels may not be as high as would be expected in a case of diabetic ketoacidosis, making the diagnosis more challenging. We present a case of empagliflozin induced euglycemic ketoacidosis in a post Whipple’s surgery patient. A 52 years old man with upper abdominal pain was found to have a duodenal mass on evaluation. He was a known diabetic on tablets sitagliptin and empagliflozin. Patient underwent Whipple’s surgery for the duodenal mass. Patient had severe metabolic acidosis with ketosis in the immediate post-operative period with mild elevation of blood sugar. The common causes of ketoacidosis were eliminated and the diagnosis of drug induced ketoacidosis was clinched. Patient was successfully treated with intravenous fluids, dextrose and insulin infusion and discharged in good health. It is important to be aware of this adverse effect so that the correct treatment is instituted in a timely fashion.


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How to Cite
G., D., Balasubramanian, S., D., R., & Misra, S. (2020). SGLT 2 inhibitor induced euglycemic ketoacidosis. Surgical Update: International Journal of Surgery, Trauma and Orthopedics, 6(1), 64-66.
Case Report