Author: Gary Jackson

Diabetic ketoacidosis: Why does my breath smell like acetone?

If your body is not producing insulin, ketone bodies will begin to build up in your bloodstream. This buildup of ketones can produce a life-threatening condition known as ketoacidosis. Remember to eat well-balanced meals spaced throughout the day.

People with liver disease have higher levels of certain chemical compounds, including acetone. The link between liver disease and fruity, musty breath is so strong that healthcare providers use breath smell as an indication of liver disease. If a person’s breath smells like acetone — or nail polish remover — it may indicate that there are high levels of ketones in their blood. If you have symptoms of alcoholic ketoacidosis, your doctor will perform a physical examination.

What are the symptoms of alcoholic ketoacidosis?

It’s vital to understand what this condition is, how it occurs and how it’s treated. Understanding alcoholic ketoacidosis can help you recognize and prevent it. In general, the prognosis for a patient presenting with AKA is good as long as the condition is identified and treated early. The major cause of morbidity and mortality in patients diagnosed with AKA is under-recognition of concomitant diseases (that may have precipitated the AKA, to begin with). These include acute pancreatitis, gastrointestinal bleeding, and alcohol withdrawal.

Sudden death due to alcoholic ketoacidosis is common among those who binge drink on an empty stomach or lose nutrients through vomiting. Read more due to vomiting, resulting in a relatively normal pH; the main clue is the elevated anion gap. If history does not rule out toxic alcohol ingestion as a cause of the elevated anion gap, serum methanol and ethylene glycol levels should be measured. Typically, an alcohol binge leads to vomiting and the cessation of alcohol or food intake for ≥ 24 hours. During this period of starvation, vomiting continues and abdominal pain develops, leading the patient to seek medical attention. Pancreatitis Overview of Pancreatitis Pancreatitis is classified as either acute or chronic.

How is alcoholic ketoacidosis treated?

Efficient and timely management can lead to enhanced patient outcomes in patients with AKA. These conditions have to be ruled out before a medical professional can diagnose you with alcoholic ketoacidosis. If you develop any of these symptoms, seek emergency medical attention.

  • If you have been intentionally fasting or eating a ketogenic diet, fruity breath is not a cause for concern—it’s just a sign that your body has entered ketosis.
  • Your breath smell can indicate a lot more than when you last brushed your teeth.

If you begin vomiting or have other symptoms of DKA, contact your healthcare provider immediately or go to the emergency room. DKA can cause the blood to become acidic and affect how the organs function. The condition usually occurs gradually, but if a person has been vomiting, it can develop quickly.