What is an Insulin Correction Dose?

What do you do if your child’s blood sugar is high? Has your doctor given you a correction dose or “correction factor?”

A correction dose is a dose of quick-acting insulin such as Novolog, Humalog, or Apidra that is given to lower blood sugar.  It begins working in approximately 10-15 minutes.

Some doctors give what is called “sliding scale” where if your blood sugar falls between a range, such as 150-200 mg/dl, you take a specific dose, such as 1 unit.  In the beginning, this is usually what is done the first few days or weeks of a new diagnosis.

How Do You Correct a High Blood Sugar?

Once parents are comfortable with dosing, a correction factor is usually given. A correction factor is a number, along with a target bg goal, that is used to determine the dose.

The correction factor, also known as Sensitivity Factor is the amount 1 unit of insulin will lower blood sugar.

How Correction Factors Work:

Current BG minus Target, divided by Sensitivity Factor.

Here’s an example:

BG: 300, Target 150, Correction Factor: 50.

300 minus 150 equals 150. 150 divided by 50 equals 3.

The correction dose would be 3.

This is why kids with diabetes are so good at math!

The insulin pumps figure the dose for you based on that scenario, and there are apps that will figure the dose based on correction and carb ratio factors.  Heres’ a link to a post on apps.  More on Carb ratios here!

This example is ONLY an Example!!

Get your correction dose from your physician.  Keeping blood sugar logs is helpful for your doctor and yourself when trying to determine if the dose is working.

The typical way a physician or CDE determines the correction factor is to take either 1700 or 1800 and divide by the total daily dose of insulin. That’s a great starting place when determining the factor.

Need help with what to do for a low blood sugar? Here’s a post and a link to a free printable on low blood sugars.

But as in all my posts, do NOT change your dosing without consulting with your doctor!

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Author: Carol

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