Islets of Hope         What is "correction factor?"

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diabetes medical terms
Medical Encyclopedia


Non-diabetic, non-pregnant individuals maintain blood glucose within a very narrow range – between 60-100 mg/dl (3.3-6.4 mmol/L) in a morning fasting state.

After eating, a "normal" blood sugar reading is considered up to 140 mg/dl (7.8 mmol/L) 2 hours after eating.

High blood sugar, also called hyperglycemia may be a symptom of diabetes, and low blood sugar may be indicative of hypoglycemia.


Correction factor

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Glucose" is a form of sugar and so blood glucose is also often referred to as blood sugar.  For the purpose of this definition we will use the term "blood glucose" but either term is generally considered acceptable.

Definition of "correction factor:"  A person with diabetes who needs to use insulin will be given a correction factor by their doctor.  The correction factor is a formula used to calculate the amount of insulin needed to bring down or "correct" blood sugar that is too high.

Correcting high blood sugar involves giving insulin via syringe, an insulin pump, or sometimes, if a patient is hospitalized, through an IV.  The type of insulin used for correcting high blood sugars is usually a rapid or fast-acting insulin.

Everyone has a unique correction factor and other things need to be considered when given insulin for a correction of a high blood sugar reading.  For example, a person needs to know how much insulin was last given and how long ago.  

Please be sure to talk with your doctor if you have questions about how to determine your need for insulin when you are correcting your own blood sugars.

All persons with the juvenile form of type 1 diabetes need to take insulin to live.  


Want help determining how to calculate your need for insulin? First, be sure to check with your doctor but you can also use Insulin Pumper's insulin calculating tool to better understand how your doctor might  determine your need for insulin.


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Page Updated 07/24/2007