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Revista Virtual de la Sociedad Paraguaya de Medicina Interna

On-line version ISSN 2312-3893


BRUNO, Freddy Javier  and  ORTEGA FILARTIGA, Edgar. Incidence of hyperglycemia in patients with corticosteroid therapy. Rev. virtual Soc. Parag. Med. Int. [online]. 2018, vol.5, n.2, pp.38-44.  Epub Sep 01, 2018. ISSN 2312-3893.


Corticosteroid-induced hyperglycemia is a well-known adverse effect of glucocorticoid (GC) treatment. It can occur in both diabetic and non-diabetic patients.


To determine the incidence of corticosteroid-induced hyperglycemia, as well as the indications and types of corticosteroids used in patients with hyperglycemia induced by these drugs in patients who attend the outpatient clinical services of the Hospital Nacional de Itauguá.

Material and methods:

Observational, descriptive, longitudinal, prospective study carried out in men and women, older than 18 years old, who received enteral or parenteral corticotherapy and attended the outpatient clinical services of the Hospital Nacional in 2017.


The mean age of the patients studied was 51±16 years and female patients predominated (56.7%). While 35% of patients presented hyperglycemia, 26% had HbA1C levels ≥6.5%. Only 14% were known diabetics. The autoimmune pathologies that most frequently required corticotherapy were systemic lupus erythematosus and rheumatoid arthritis. Prednisone was the glucocorticoid used most frequently. No patient presented acute decompensation such as ketoacidosis or hyperosmolar state.


The incidence of hyperglycemia induced by corticosteroid therapy was 35% in diabetic and non-diabetic patients. The most frequent indication for the use of corticosteroids was autoimmune diseases and the most frequently used corticosteroid was prednisone.

Keywords : corticosteroids - adverse effects; corticosteroids - therapeutic use; hyperglycemia; diabetes mellitus..

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