1. Is 50% dextrose as safe as 10% dextrose?
1 a. Can cautious administration eliminate that difference in safety?
2. Is 50% dextrose as efficacious as 10% dextrose?
3. Is 50% dextrose as affordable as 10% dextrose?
Out of 3 criteria, 50% dextrose fails two of the criteria.
If 10% dextrose is cheaper and it is safer to switch to 10% dextrose, why do so many of us in EMS resist this simple change?
Two of the subjects contacted by the researchers after treatment reported that before the study they had often had difficulty bringing their blood glucose back to their expected usual level after being treated by paramedics using 50% dextrose.
While this may indicate idiosyncratic responses, there is no mention of any similar negative responses to 10% dextrose. this might require a larger study to examine, but this is a great start.
The picture is one I found labeled as being from Annals of Emergency Medicine of 50% Dextrose extravasation, but I do not know anything about which issue it is from or any other details.
I have also written about this in –
Should EMS Still Use 50% Dextrose – 5/03/2011
Comment on 10% Dextrose vs 50% Dextrose – 5/05/2011
 Dextrose 10% or 50% in the treatment of hypoglycaemia out of hospital? A randomised controlled trial.
Moore C, Woollard M.
Emerg Med J. 2005 Jul;22(7):512-5.
PMID: 15983093 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
A review of the research on this topic, which is predominantly about the above paper.
A review of the efficacy of 10% dextrose as an alternative to high concentration glucose in the treatment of out-of-hospital hypoglycaemia
Ziad Nehme, Daniel Cudini
2009; Volume 7 : Issue 3; Article Number: 990341
Journal of Emergency Primary Health Care
Free Full Text with link to PDF Download