Skip to Content
Home > Wellness > Health Library > Hyperosmolar State
A hyperosmolar state develops
when a person with type 2 diabetes has very high blood sugar—usually 600
milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) or more. Sometimes this condition is the first time a person learns that he or she has type 2 diabetes.
A hyperosmolar state can develop when a person is very sick and/or dehydrated, such as from the flu, a severe infection, a heart
attack, or water pills (diuretics). If the
person does not drink enough liquids, he or she may become confused. Older people are at increased risk for
developing a hyperosmolar state.
Symptoms of a hyperosmolar state include:
Hyperosmolar state is treated in a hospital with insulin to reduce
the blood sugar level and extra fluids through a vein (IV) to replace the lost
The best way to prevent a hyperosmolar state is to treat high blood sugar levels early and drink enough liquids.
Current as of:
May 22, 2015
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Rhonda O'Brien, MS, RD, CDE - Certified Diabetes Educator
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2015 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
I Want To...
Our interactive Decision Points guide you through making key health decisions by combining medical information with your personal information.
You'll find Decision Points to help you answer questions about:
Get started learning more about your health!
Our Interactive Tools can help you make smart decisions for a healthier life. You'll find personal calculators and tools for health and fitness, lifestyle checkups, and pregnancy.
Feeling under the weather?
Use our interactive symptom checker to evaluate your symptoms and determine appropriate action or treatment.