Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Hypothermia as a forgotten sign of prolonged severe hypoglycaemia
  1. Fahad Syed Naseerullah1,
  2. Avinash Murthy2
  1. 1Internal Medicine, SSM Health Good Samaritan, Mt Vernon, Illinois, USA
  2. 2Department of Cardiology, SSM Health Good Samaritan, Mt Vernon, Illinois, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Fahad Syed Naseerullah, FAHAD_2987{at}HOTMAIL.COM


Hypothermia is often a sign of serious illness. Commonly reported aetiologies include but are not limited to sepsis, exposure to cold and endocrine disorders. Hypoglycaemia, a common occurrence, is rarely associated with hypothermia. We present a case of prolonged, severe hypothermia due to hypoglycaemia. A 58-year-old man with diabetes who presented with chest pain and was diagnosed with Non-ST elevation myocardial infarction. He was given nothing per mouth in preparation for a left heart catheterisation but received his reported insulin glargine dosage at bedtime. A few hours later, he was noted to have diaphoresis and hypoglycaemia, and his temperature steadily started dropping which was unresponsive to local warming. Once his hypoglycaemia was successfully treated with dextrose infusion, his temperature improved. An extensive workup revealed no infective or endocrine disorder.

  • endocrine system
  • diabetes
  • general practice / family medicine
  • medical management
  • safety

Statistics from


  • Contributors Case initially identified: AM, FSN. Conception: AM, FSN. Writing the manuscript: FSN. Acquisition of data: FSN. Final review and editing: FSN, AM.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.