Glucagon

Glucagon is a hyperglycemic hormone secreted by the alpha cells of the islets of Langerhans in the pancreas and increases blood sugar by stimulating glycogenolysis (glycogen breakdown) in the liver.

Glucagon protects the body cells, especially those in the brain and retina, by providing the nutrients and energy needed to maintain body function. Glucagon, available for parenteral use, treats insulin-induced hypoglycemia when other methods of providing glucose are not available. Glucagon can increase blood glucose level in patients who are semiconscious or unconscious and unable to ingest carbohydrates.

Oral diazoxide (Proglycem) increases blood sugar by inhibiting insulin release from the beta cells and stimulating release of epinephrine (Adrenalin) from the adrenal medulla. Oral diazoxide (Proglycem) is used to treat chronic hypoglycemia caused by hyperinsulinism due to islet cell cancer or hyperplasia, but not for hypoglycemic reactions. Patients don't experience hypotension when taking oral diazoxide (Proglycem).

A list of antidiabetic second generation drugs is provided in the Appendix. Detailed tables show doses, recommendations, expectations, side effects, contraindications, and more; available on the book's Web site (see URL in Appendix).

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