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Endocrine emergencies 

Endocrine emergencies
Endocrine emergencies

Gary Butler

and Jeremy Kirk

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date: 31 July 2021

This chapter is intended to be brief, providing readily accessible information required in an endocrine emergency in an infant, child, or adolescent.

Endocrine emergencies are rare but because of this they are usually unexpected.

Always take a few moments to assess the situation.

Getting the clinical signs and obtaining the right biochemical samples at the time is often the key to getting the correct diagnosis and management.

The theory and background about each problem are dealt with in the relevant chapter.

The key endocrine emergencies are:

diabetic ketoacidosis


adrenal insufficiency



acute diabetes insipidus

syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone secretion

hyperthyroid crisis

hypothyroid coma

unclear sex (ambiguous genitalia—disorders of sex development).

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