SOL HAMBURG, B.S.; ROSA HENDLER, M.D.; ROBERT S. SHERWIN, M.D.
To ascertain whether small elevations of epinephrine alter glucose tolerance, we infused epinephrine or saline into seven healthy volunteers for 5 hours. Two hours after starting the infusions, subjects ingested 100 g of glucose. Plasma epinephrine (basal 23 ± 4 pg/mL) rose during epinephrine infusion to levels (75 to 80 pg/mL) similar to those observed in nine outpatients presenting with mild viral illnesses (66 ± 8 pg/mL). Although epinephrine produced only a small (5 mg/dL) increase in plasma glucose before glucose ingestion, after oral glucose the levels of glucose increased by 30 to 60 mg/dL above saline control values (163 ± 14 mg/dL versus 108 ± 15 at 2 h,p < 0.005). This diabetogenic effect occurred despite two-fold higher insulin levels and normal suppression of plasma glucagon. We conclude that small physiologic increments of epinephrine, which cause minimal changes in fasting plasma glucose, produce a marked reduction in glucose tolerance. Our data suggest marked sensitivity to the insulin antagonistic effects of epinephrine and may provide a mechanism for stressinduced glucose intolerance.
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HAMBURG S, HENDLER R, SHERWIN RS. Influence of Small Increments of Epinephrine on Glucose Tolerance in Normal Humans. Ann Intern Med. 1980;93:566-568. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-93-4-566
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1980;93(4):566-568.
Cardiology, Coronary Risk Factors, Diabetes, Endocrine and Metabolism, Infectious Disease.
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Print ISSN: 0003-4819 | Online ISSN: 1539-3704
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