Pediatr Neurol. 2021 Jan;114:1-4. doi: 10.1016/j.pediatrneurol.2020.09.013. Epub 2020 Sep 30.
Hyperglycemic Crisis in Patients With Mitochondrial Encephalopathy, Lactic Acidosis, and Stroke-like Episodes (MELAS).
BACKGROUND: Diabetes mellitus is the most commonly encountered endocrinopathy in patients with mitochondrial encephalopathy, lactic acidosis, and stroke-like episodes (MELAS), which manifests as multisystemic organ failure. Whether the management of diabetes mellitus in MELAS requires special consideration is not fully clarified.
METHODS: In this single-center study, we retrospectively reviewed the medical records of patients with MELAS to elucidate the clinical characteristics of MELAS-associated diabetes mellitus.
RESULTS: Four patients among a total of 25 individuals with MELAS who were treated in the study institution developed diabetes mellitus. One patient had well-controlled diabetes mellitus, whereas the remaining three patients experienced hyperglycemic crisis as the first manifestation of diabetes mellitus. Two of the three patients were children aged four and six years. The hyperglycemic events occurred after surgery, infection, and status epilepticus, respectively. None of the three patients had diabetes mellitus previously based on randomly measured serum glucose levels that were within the normal range before the hyperglycemic crisis. Glycated hemoglobin levels measured during the hyperglycemic crisis indicated prediabetes in two patients and diabetes mellitus in one patient. Two patients recovered, whereas one patient died after developing multiorgan failure.
CONCLUSIONS: Fulminant-onset diabetes mellitus occurring in patients with MELAS underscore the importance of routine measurement for glycated hemoglobin and more intense evaluation of glucose intolerance regardless of the patient age and lack of symptoms. Clinicians should be aware of the potential acute onset of hyperglycemic crisis in patients with MELAS, especially in individuals with aggravating factors.