Published online Nov 30, 2009. doi: 10.4240/wjgs.v1.i1.3
Revised: November 9, 2009
Accepted: November 16, 2009
Published online: November 30, 2009
Until recently, stress hyperglycemia was considered to be a beneficial adaptive response, with raised blood glucose providing a ready source of fuel for the brain, skeletal muscle, heart and other vital organs at a time of increased metabolic demand. Following the Leuven Intensive Insulin Therapy Trial in 2001, tight glycemic control became rapidly adopted as the standard of care in intensive care units (ICU’s) throughout the world. However, four randomized controlled studies and the recently published NICE-SUGAR study have subsequently been unable to replicate the findings of the Leuven Intensive Insulin Therapy Trial. This paper offers an explanation for these discordant findings, and provides a practical approach to glucose control in the ICU.