Hypoglycemia in Infants
Hi-po-gli-see-me-uhEn Español (Spanish Version)
Glucose is a type of sugar. It is the body’s main source of energy.
Hypoglycemia is when the level of glucose in the blood becomes too low. When blood glucose drops too low, the body does not have enough energy to function properly. Hypoglycemia in infants occurs in babies less than one year old.
The body can normally balance the amount of glucose in the blood. The body will release insulin to reduce high levels of glucose in the blood. When blood glucose levels drop too low, the body can release stored glucose. Hypoglycemia occurs when these factors are disrupted.
Situations that can lead to hypoglycemia include:
- Low fat and glucose stores—common in small for age or premature babies
- Conditions that increase use of glucose such as fevers, seizure, or stress
- High levels of insulin
Newborns can also have hypoglycemia during the first 2 hours after birth. This is often a temporary situation. Your child’s body will adjust soon after birth.
Last reviewedSeptember 2013by Kari Kassir, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.