IDDM patients' opinions on the use of glucagon emergency kit in severe episodes of hypoglycaemia

O. Yanai, D. Pilpel, I. Harman, E. Elitzur-Leiberman, M. Phillip

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


This study investigated the coping strategies of IDDM patients with mild and severe episodes of hypoglycaemia. One hundred and two IDDM patients, aged 4-62 years old, 59% male and 41% female, were interviewed by telephone using a structured questionnaire. Most of the patients recognised the symptoms of hypoglycaemia and accordingly treated their mild episodes with either Coca Cola or fruit juice (61%), sweets (32%), milk (26%), or a slice of bread (23%). Forty two per cent of the patients treated themselves with additional chocolate, fruit or honey. While 83% of the patients reported that they had received an explanation regarding the use of the glucagon emergency kit only 60% actually owned it. In only 19% of the patients who had ever experienced a severe episode of hypoglycaemia had this mode of treatment actually been used. Most of the patients (67%) said they would prefer the intranasal route if available and 82% assumed that the people surrounding them would prefer to administer an intranasal spray or drops in emergency hypoglycaemic situations. We conclude that only in a small percentage of patients is subcutaneous or intramuscular glucagon used in an emergency situation, and speculate that other modes of glucagon administration such as the intranasal route would increase the use of glucagon and prevent some of the IDDM patients from waiting for the emergency paramedic teams or from being referred to hospitals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)40-42
Number of pages3
JournalPractical Diabetes International
Issue number2
StatePublished - 7 Jun 1997
Externally publishedYes


  • Glucagon
  • Hypoglycaemia
  • Insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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