DOI: 10.2337/db23-152-lb ISSN: 0012-1797

152-LB: Implementing a Pilot Clinic for Steroid-Induced Hyperglycemia in Graft vs. Host Disease

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Internal Medicine

Introduction: Malignant hematologic disorders are often treated with hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. This can be complicated by graft versus host disease (GVHD). Treatment is high dose corticosteroids, which often leads to steroid induced hyperglycemia (SIH). Uncontrolled hyperglycemia is associated with increased morbidity and mortality. Despite evidence favoring glycemic control in this population, there are no formal protocols or clinics in place to achieve this.

Methods: The University of Kansas Blood and Marrow Transplant Program collaborated with the Department of Endocrinology to establish a pilot clinic for patients with GVHD who have SIH. Over 12 months, patients were referred to a physician assistant specializing in diabetes. They were seen at 1-4 week intervals based on acuity and glycemic control. Data was collected on blood glucose, hemoglobin A1c, fructosamine, steroid doses, insulin doses, hospitalizations, infections, and death.

Results: 64 patients were referred to this clinic. 24 were excluded due to lack of hyperglycemia or declined being seen. Median time to index visit from referral was 20.5 days (IQR 8.25-29). Median A1c at index visit was 5.9 (IQR 5.4-7.2) and at 3 months was 5.3 (IQR 4.6-6.3). Median highest glucose within the first 3 months was 230 mg/dL (IQR 183-362) and at 3-6 months was 161 mg/dL (IQR 119.8-247, p-value = 0.0025). Median lowest glucose at 3 months was 86 mg/dL (IQR 78.5-103) and at 6 months was 87 mg/dL (IQR 75-115.8). There were 20 patients who were hospitalized and 9 patient deaths.

Conclusions: Managing SIH is complex and requires a multidisciplinary approach. Patients who were seen had reduced episodes of hyperglycemia without increased episodes of hypoglycemia. A1c is an unreliable measurement in this patient population due to high cell turnover and frequent transfusions. Future studies using continuous glucose monitors could be investigated to assess the efficacy and feasibility of this pilot clinic.


D. Pham: None. K. Grdinovac: None. J. Leal: None. L. Rodriguez: None. A. Salva: None. W. Wesson: None. J. McGuirk: None.

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