Examination of implementation of intravenous and subcutaneous insulin protocols and glycemic control in heart transplant patients

Amisha Wallia*, Suruchi Gupta, Cristina Garcia, Kathleen Schmidt, Diana Johnson Oakes, Grazia Aleppo, Valerie Glossop, Adin Cristian Andrei, Kathleen L. Grady, Edwin McGee, Mark E. Molitch

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Objective: Perioperative glycemic management is particularly challenging in heart transplant (HT) patients who are on high-dose steroids and subject to surgical stress. The objective of the study was to examine the efficacy and safety of perioperative insulin administration in HT patients with and without diabetes.Methods: Medical records of 71 HT patients from June 1, 2005 to July 31, 2009 whose hyperglycemia was managed by our Glucose Management Service (GMS) were analyzed for up to 1 year after HT. Their daily blood glucose (BG) averages on intravenous (IV) insulin drips and subcutaneous (SQ) insulin, hypoglycemia rates, reasons for hypoglycemia, and deviations from insulin protocols were analyzed.Results: Daily BG averages between diabetic (DM) and nondiabetic (nonDM) patients were not significantly different while on the drip but were significantly different for first 5 days on SQ (P<.05). The daily insulin glargine doses were similar. No patients developed severe hypoglycemia (BG 40 mg/dL) while on drip, and only 2.8% experienced hypoglycemia on SQ. Among 40 episodes of moderate hypoglycemia while on drip, 15 had nurse deviations from protocol prior to the episode. Posttransition day fasting glucose was at goal (mean 124.7 ± 35.4 mg/dL); however 39.4% (28/71) of patients received a transition insulin glargine dose that was different from the amount indicated by protocol. The likelihood of developing moderate hypoglycemia on SQ was associated with the glargine dose used at the time of transition (odds ratio [OR] 1.03, P = .034).Conclusion: Inpatient insulin protocols implemented by a GMS are successful in obtaining glycemic control with minimal side effects in patients with and without diabetes, even when they are on a high-dose steroid regimen.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)527-535
Number of pages9
JournalEndocrine Practice
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology


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