Out of Control Blood Sugar Due To Cortisone Injections

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MissyMousums
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Date Joined Jul 2008
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   Posted 7/20/2008 4:09 AM (GMT -6)   
Hello all!
 
Yesterday I received two shots of cortisone due to bursitis in both hips (I am allergic to aspirin and NSAIDs).  I have had shots in the past but only one at a time.  I was told by the doctor that it may affect my blood sugar and boy has it!  Anytime I eat something, it shoots up to around 300.  I have stayed away from carbs and caffeine so I can't figure this out.  Tonight, in an hour's time went from 148 to 257.  Now it is slowly decreasing.  It seems that eating is making it worse and I don't know what to do.  I called the advice nurse (Veterans hospital) and she said that the first 24 hours it will be like this.  It's been over 24 hours and I feel horrible and my skin feels very warm (this my be due to just the cortisone shot itself.  On top of all this, I cannot take my BP med because it's a diuretic so my BP is up to 170/108.  What can I do??  I appreciate any help one can give!

Post Edited (MissyMousums) : 7/20/2008 4:14:52 AM (GMT-6)


LanieG
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   Posted 7/20/2008 5:53 AM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to the Forum Missy, since cortisone is a steroid your blood sugar will definitely be higher while it's in your system.  How much it affects it depends on the severity of diabetes so it varies from patient to patient, which is why people on medication have to test and adjust their meds for this rise.  I understand that the cortisone levels will decrease slowly (and you had two shots so it would be longer than if you'd had one obviously) but you need to keep testing until it goes down to the levels the blood sugar was before.  I don't know why you can't take your BP medicine.  Did the doctor tell you not to?  Be sure you talk to the doctor/nurse.

Lanie
forum moderator - diabetes
diabetes controlled so far by low/no carb diet and exercise; no meds


MissyMousums
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Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 11
   Posted 7/20/2008 3:23 PM (GMT -6)   

Hi Lanie!

I was told to hold off on the diuretic (water pill) because it could make the whole thing worse.  I guess they figure I would be ok to go without for a day or so.  Normally without meds my BP is around 150/98 but my BP may be higher because I just don't feel well and I am a little stressed with this whole thing.  My blood sugars today are normal but all I have eaten was eggs.  I am really pushing the fluids so that may be helping.  I am afraid to eat anything with carbs because yesterday my blood sugar skyrocketed after eating a piece of toast.   The advice nurse with the VA said if it gets too high (above 400), I should go to the ER for insulin.  I have only been a diagnosed diabetic for a year so this whole thing is new to me.   I started going to the VA for this because my now former family doctor had me on meds and she kept diagnosing me as pre-diabetic which excluded me from getting help with the cost of test strips or getting a referral to an endocrinologist.  

I will contact the nurse again if things get bad but I think hearing from fellow diabetics who may have been through this would help also and it has!  Thanks for responding!   :-)


LanieG
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Date Joined Nov 2006
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   Posted 7/20/2008 4:19 PM (GMT -6)   
Gee Missy, what a situation.  Well, to help keep the blood sugar down, stay away from white food (bread, cereal, rice, potatoes, pasta) and concentrate more on other vegetables.  Proteins like meat, chicken and fish won't bother the blood sugar, so you can eat nicely with all that and salads but no bread!  Let us know how it's going.

Lanie
forum moderator - diabetes
diabetes controlled so far by low/no carb diet and exercise; no meds


Jack Ryan
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Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 11
   Posted 7/22/2008 2:15 AM (GMT -6)   
I'm also allergic to aspirin but I have terrible joint pain and herniated disks in my neck and back.

I take feldene every day and when ever other people would use aspirin. It is Rx.

http://www.drugs.com/mtm/feldene.html

ericsmom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 1042
   Posted 7/22/2008 7:23 AM (GMT -6)   
Morning Peeps
 
I am wondering if perhaps one should be drinking a meal supplement in lieu of eating when having steroid injections?  I am on methotrexate sad , and take it once a week..it helps on the following day for the nausea that goes with MTX, Glucernin?  Just wondering if this drink would help people who have to take other meds or injections when their sugars goe bonkers?
 
Hugs
Diane
Fibromyagia, R/A, Diabetes, Atrial Fib, depression

folic acid, metformin, diamicron, bisoprolol, fenofibrate, pantoloc, wellbutrin, propafenone, ibprofen, warfarin, methotrexate


Some people dream of angels, I held one in my arms


MissyMousums
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Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 11
   Posted 7/23/2008 2:34 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Diane,

I guess it depends on the brand. Ensure is high in carbs but others may not be. They had told me to abstain from carbs as much as possible for the time being. I have a follow up tomorrow and I will ask and get back to you. I don't plan on getting any more injections unless I absolutely have to. If I do, I will only have them give one shot at a time. I think for me, it was just too much at one time.

ericsmom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 1042
   Posted 7/23/2008 9:31 AM (GMT -6)   

Morning Missy

The Glycerna is a diabetic meal supplement....I believe Ensure is definately not a good diabetic product...more for the elderly, or people on the go type supplement.
 
For sure...2 cortisone shots at once?!!  I hope your sugar has stabilized by now, or this afternoon. 
 
Gentle hugs
Diane

 


Fibromyagia, R/A, Diabetes, Atrial Fib, depression

folic acid, metformin, diamicron, bisoprolol, fenofibrate, pantoloc, wellbutrin, propafenone, ibprofen, warfarin, methotrexate


Some people dream of angels, I held one in my arms


MissyMousums
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 11
   Posted 7/23/2008 10:59 PM (GMT -6)   
Evening Diane,
 
Yes you are right about the Glycerna, my bad and I will buy some and see how that goes.
 
My sugars are slowly stablizing but I have avoid the carbs.  I went to the doc and she said I have a virus called Fifth Disease aka Erythema Infectiosum which is compunding the problem with the cortisone.  I remember my kids having it years ago but I never got it until now LOL .  Lucky me.  My doc said that my immunity is not what it was 20 years ago which is true because I rarely caught what my kids had and according to my mother, I never had it as a child.   Anyhoo..she also said it may be time to start taking Byetta injections.   She wants me to get some blood work done first and check my A1C just to be sure.  My daily sugar levels have been pretty good until this last weekend so I hope they are good and we can hold off on the Byetta. 
 
I appreciate all the responses, it really did help!  I am feeling better and hope to have the pep in my step back soon.  yeah
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Barbiek1211
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Date Joined Apr 2013
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 4/3/2013 7:58 AM (GMT -6)   
Morning folks, 
I had two cortisone injections yesterday, one in my right knee and one in my shoulder.  As soon as I got off the table my knee swelled up badly. My should feels fine except in injection site.  I got home and felt awful and ended up on crutches.  I checked my blood sugar and it was 472.  That was way too high.  I called the Joslin Diabetic Clinic in Boston at midnight and got some on call doctor who sounded half asleep and spoke very bad English!  She did not know me or my history so she was of no help.  I took my meds and worried all night I would get worse.  My knee was insanely swollen and sore.  I should have gone to the ER but I didn't.  Today it is around 333 blood sugars and I am drinking coffee and eating cinnamon on my toast .  This has never happened before.  I am called the orthopedic doctor today and see what they think. It must have been the type of cortisone used.  I am not sure.  I pray it keeps going down.  I am afraid to eat anything but I know I must.  mad   

Judy2
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Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 8949
   Posted 4/3/2013 8:09 AM (GMT -6)   
I got a shot of Prednisone for a bad case of flu with asthma last year and had the same experience. Blood sugar up to the 400's. Even though I was on a solu-medrol dosepak, it came down every day until I was off the oral steroids for 24 hours, then went back to my normal readings.

I still blame my diabetes on steroid therapy for my UC.

Try eating proteins - scrambled or hardboiled eggs, cheese, etc. These should provide energy and satiate your hunger without adding significantly to the carb load.
Ulcerative colitis diagnosed in 2001; symptoms as early as 1992. In remission since 2006 with Remicade.
Inflammatory osteoarthritis; osteonecrosis from steroids
Grave's disease successfully treated with radioactive iodine and now on Levothyroxine.
Type II diabetes induced by steroids.
Meds: Remicade, Colazal, Levothyroxine, Mobic, Metformin

Moderator, thyroid forum

Barbiek1211
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Date Joined Apr 2013
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 4/3/2013 8:22 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks so much for the reply. I take Humalog and Levemir on a sliding scale. I called the orthopedic doctors office and they agreed I should have been told about the side effects of depromedrol steroid injections and not had two at once. I will call the Joslin again today and see what they think I should be using on the sliding scale.

LanieG
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Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 3066
   Posted 4/3/2013 8:34 AM (GMT -6)   
Barbiek, welcome to HealingWell. I've had cortisone shots in the hip for bursitis and my blood sugar always rose after that but came down gradually after about a day or so. I only got one shot at a time but you had two, so I'm sure that's why your blood sugar went that high. Sometimes there is swelling at the injection site and I was told to put an ice pack on it for a few minutes a couple of times a day.

In your case, I think they should have given you more instructions about the knee and the effects on your blood sugar. Many times, they use something like lidocaine (spelling?) before the shot to numb the area. And if that area hurts afterwards I was told to use Tylenol. But I think the doctor and nurses should have given you more information at that time since your knee was already swelling in the office. And when you got home, you should have called them back immediately. But that's the past.

As far as eating, absolutely you must eat and adjust your diabetes meds to your blood sugar. Eating toast is going to keep your blood sugar raised, so as Judy says, I think you should be eating more proteins along with vegetables and stay away from the carbs.

I hope you're feeling better.
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled so far by diet and exercise
very low carb way of eating

Barbiek1211
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2013
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 4/3/2013 8:48 AM (GMT -6)   

Thank you Laine.  I did have yogurt so I hope that was a good choice.  I will have an egg soon.  I feel shaky so that's probably what my body went through.  Next time I will be more informed about what I am getting for injections.  Yes, they should have advised me where I am a diabetic type 2 taking insulin.
 
This is a great website and I thank you all for being here. 

Barbiek1211
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2013
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 4/3/2013 8:48 AM (GMT -6)   
Sorry misspelled your name Lanie!!!

LanieG
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 3066
   Posted 4/3/2013 9:01 AM (GMT -6)   
tongue Don't worry about misspelling! You won't be graded on that! (only grammar turn )

You probably already know that blood sugar rises for different reasons and in your case now it could be: the cortisone, pain, fear, food, lack of food.

Knowing this, you need to control what you can. Eat right and take your meds as you should. Hopefully the other annoying factors will lessen with time.

I found that the more I know and understand about something (like my health), the better I can control it!
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled so far by diet and exercise
very low carb way of eating

Barbiek1211
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2013
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 4/3/2013 9:05 AM (GMT -6)   
That is so true Lanie. I will keep a close check on it today and eat properly. I need to get back out walking!!!

LanieG
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 3066
   Posted 4/3/2013 9:11 AM (GMT -6)   
I don't know where you are but it's been too cold to go out walking most days here outside of Memphis. And rainy.

What's going on with your knee and shoulder that you needed the shots?
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled so far by diet and exercise
very low carb way of eating

Barbiek1211
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2013
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 4/3/2013 9:18 AM (GMT -6)   
I am in Marblehead, MA. Cold here!! 34 degrees and sunny but going down to 29 tonight! I fell two weeks ago in my home in the dark (silly me) and hit the doorframe of the bathroom hard.! No more in the dark. Nothing broken but bruised and inflamed badly.

LanieG
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 3066
   Posted 4/3/2013 9:25 AM (GMT -6)   
Ouch! I broke a toe running into a door frame in the dark once. We have night lights all over the house now. You're lucky! Take care of yourself.

Do some gentle exercises and stretches in the meantime.
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled so far by diet and exercise
very low carb way of eating

Barbiek1211
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2013
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 4/3/2013 9:39 AM (GMT -6)   
I will. Thank you!! Toes are so painful!!!

dennismi
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 2/5/2014 10:40 AM (GMT -6)   
I had an epidural with steroids introduced into my spine and definitely noted the increase in my glucose levels. Normally, my glucose readings are <100 two hours after eating. The day of the shots, they jumped to 213 and would not come down below 160. It's my second day, and they seem to be coming down now but still high for me (120 2 hours after a meal). I can't seem to find any medical explanation of the phenomena but I can definitely understand the posts as it's extremely frustrating for me to seem to lose control of glucose levels. Does anyone have any links to explain exactly what is occuring in the body when steroids are introduced into the body? Thanks!

LanieG
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 3066
   Posted 2/5/2014 2:30 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Dennis (is it Dennis?), steroids have been a problem for both diabetics and non-diabetics because they raise blood sugar.  While on steroids, the doctor usually tells the patient what to expect and if the blood sugar is too high, diabetes meds will sometimes be prescribes or adjusted if the patient is already on it.
 
 
I hope this helps. 
 
If you would like to make a new post and introduce yourself, please do!  yeah
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled by diet and exercise and
metformin
very low carb way of eating

dennismi
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Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 2/5/2014 8:00 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Lanie and yes, it's Dennis.

Excellent article! I did, in fact, take an extra metformin (was on 2x 500mg per day, doctor reduced to 1x due to my progress) when I noticed how high it was. Interesting how complex our internal body chemistry is. It never fails to amaze me all of the interactions. Anyway, thanks so much and wish there was a magic answer to diabetes. Best I can ever advocate is exercise, eat healthy, and don't deviate from your diet. In the meantime, I'll keep learning as I can. Thanks again!

PDKB_Angels
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 2/28/2014 10:12 PM (GMT -6)   
I got a cortisone shot for my shoulder today and to my shock my blood sugar level skyrocketed to 534. It took me 5 hours and several injections of fast acting insulin to get it down to 128 only to have it go right back up again within an hour of getting it down as low as I did and the ONLY thing I had on my stomach since getting it down to 128 was a few sips of REGULAR tea with 2 ounces of 1% milk and splenda. (the cup is a 20 ounce mug that my grandson gave me) Since reading the posts on this thread, I am relieved to know that this is typical with cortisone injections. I had a cortisone shot about 4 or 5 years ago and my sugar levels were fine.. I guess getting older is par for the course for elevated sugar levels with cortisone shots. I am hopeful that in a few days my sugar levels will return to normal.
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