Signs and Symptoms of
Low Blood Sugar

Recognize low blood sugar early and take action

It is important to be able to identify the signs and symptoms of hypoglycemia early. That will help you treat it before it becomes severe.

Special Alert:

The signs and symptoms of low blood sugar may become less noticeable after a person has had diabetes for a while. Some signs and symptoms might be so subtle that it is hard to react to them in time. Having signs and symptoms of low blood sugar without realizing it is called “hypoglycemic unawareness.”

With low blood sugar, you may feel:

  • Weak or tired
  • Hungry
  • Dizzy or shaky
  • Nervous or upset
  • Sweaty
  • Like your heart is beating too fast
  • Like your vision is blurry

Ask your diabetes care team what low blood sugar is for you. For most people, it is less than 70 mg/dL. Check your blood sugar right away if you have any symptoms of low blood sugar. If your blood sugar is low, or if you think your blood sugar is low but you cannot check at that time, eat or drink something high in sugar right away, such as:

  • 4 ounces (1/2 cup) of regular fruit juice
  • 4 ounces (1/2 cup) of regular soda pop (not diet)
  • Glucose tablets
  • Hard candies that you can chew quickly (such as mints)

Always check with your doctor on how to treat your low blood sugar.

Wait 15 minutes and then check your blood sugar again. If it is still low and if symptoms don’t disappear, eat or drink something high in sugar again. Once your blood sugar returns to normal, eat a regular meal or snack as planned. This can help keep low blood sugar from coming back.

If low blood sugar is not treated, it can cause you to pass out. It may even lead to death. If you sometimes have sudden low blood sugar that requires help from another person, ask your diabetes care team if a glucagon kit would be helpful.

  • Glucagon is a medicine that can be injected and works quickly to raise your blood sugar
  • Glucagon is used to raise your blood sugar when you cannot take sugar by mouth
  • Keep the glucagon kit in a handy place
  • Make sure that family members, friends, and co-workers know how to use it

Indications and Usage for GlucaGen® HypoKit® (glucagon [rDNA origin] for injection):

GlucaGen® is a prescription medicine used to treat very low blood sugar (severe hypoglycemia) that can happen in people who have diabetes and use insulin. Symptoms of severe hypoglycemia include confusion, loss of consciousness, and seizures. You should only give GlucaGen® injection if (1) the person is unconscious or (2) the person is having a seizure or (3) the person is confused and unable to eat sugar or a sugar-sweetened product. Less severe cases of hypoglycemia should be treated right away by eating sugar or a sugar sweetened product such as a regular soft drink or fruit juice. GlucaGen® does not work if it is taken by mouth.

Important Safety Information for GlucaGen® HypoKit®:

Do not use GlucaGen® if you are allergic to glucagon or lactose, have a tumor of the adrenal gland called a pheochromocytoma, or have a tumor of the pancreas called insulinoma.

Hypoglycemia may happen again after receiving GlucaGen® treatment. You must be given a fast-acting source of sugar followed by a long-acting source of sugar by mouth as soon as you are awake and able to swallow.

Tell your doctor about all medicines you take and all of your medical conditions, including if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. GlucaGen® may affect the way other medicines work, and other medicines may affect how GlucaGen® works.

GlucaGen® may cause serious side effects including allergic reactions. Symptoms of a severe allergic reaction may include rash or itching, raised red patches on your skin (hives), swelling of the face, lips, tongue or throat, problems breathing or swallowing, very high or very low blood pressure, or fast or slow heart beat. The most common side effects of GlucaGen® include nausea and vomiting.

Please click here for the GlucaGen® Prescribing Information and GlucaGen® HypoKit® Patient Information.

Talk to your doctor about the importance of diet and exercise in your treatment plan.

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch, or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

If you need assistance with prescription drug costs, help may be available. Visit pparx.org or call 1-888-4PPA-NOW.

GlucaGen® and HypoKit® are registered trademarks of Novo Nordisk A/S.

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