DKA vs HHNK: Difference and Comparison

Diabetes is something that everyone is scared of. Diabetes and human relationship from ages.

And much humans fear having diabetes, but we don’t know that most diabetes comes from an unbalanced intake of unhealthy food in the long run. We have a good diet, and if we have a good workout plan, we may be able to keep fit more than sick.

Diabetes is a disease that results in high blood sugar levels. Normally, insulin in the human body extracts sugar from the blood and transfers it to cells to store it and use it as a form of energy.

But, while having diabetes, insulin in our body rejects the sugar to transfer it from blood to cell, yet it remains in our blood, resulting in high blood sugar levels.

Diabetics Ketoacidosis (DKA) and Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK) is the type of medical emergencies that are observed in diabetic patient. Both of them are a life-threatening disease that keeps patient lives in danger.

Key Takeaways

  1. DKA is a severe complication of diabetes caused by high levels of ketones in the blood, while HHNK is a life-threatening complication caused by extremely high blood sugar levels.
  2. DKA is more common in people with type 1 diabetes, while HHNK is more common in people with type 2 diabetes.
  3. DKA can be treated with insulin and fluids, while HHNK requires immediate medical attention and treatment to prevent serious complications such as coma or death.


DKA (Diabetic Ketoacidosis) is a potentially life-threatening complication that occurs when the body produces high levels of ketones. HHNK, also known as HHS (Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic State), is a condition that occurs when blood glucose levels become extremely high, above 600 mg/dL.


Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonDiabetics Ketoacidosis (DKA)Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK)
Nature of illnessDiabetics’ Ketoacidosis (DKA) affects the person who is diabetic.Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK) rarely affects who is a diabetic patient.
Severity of illnessDiabetics’ Ketoacidosis (DKA) is less dangerous.Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK) is very dangerous.
PeriodDiabetics’ Ketoacidosis (DKA) works quickly; hence, symptoms are observed quickly.Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK) works slowly; hence, symptoms are observed for a long time.
Effects on PatientEffects of Diabetics Ketoacidosis (DKA) on Patients are high blood pressure and sugar content.Effects of Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK) can be seen in Patients from strokes, coma, and death.
SymptomsSymptoms of Diabetics Ketoacidosis (DKA) are a sudden urge to drink water, vomiting, nausea, and urination several times a day.Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK) symptoms include a sudden urge to drink water even when not thirsty, urination several times a day, concentrated specific dark-colored urine, and dehydration.
MedicationsMedications for Diabetics Ketoacidosis (DKA) are medicine and precautions.Medications for Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK) are medicines and surgery.

What is Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) ?

DKA is fully known as Diabetic Ketoacidosis, a medical emergency in diabetes that is observed in the patient’s body quickly and works at a high pace.

Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) is a common illness found in diabetic patients. Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) can be found in symptoms like high blood pressure and high blood sugar levels followed by nausea, vomiting, the urge to drink more water, and urination daily.

Also Read:  Hardwood vs Laminate: Difference and Comparison

What is Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK)?

 HHNK is fully known as Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis, which is a medical emergency in diabetes that is observed in the patient’s body after a long period and works at a slow pace.

Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK) is also known as Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketotic Syndrome (HHNKS). Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK) is a rare illness in diabetic patients.

Symptoms like dehydration can be found in Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK), more urination a day, urge to drink more water even when not thirsty, followed by strokes, followed by strokes, coma, and eventually death.

Main Differences Between Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) and Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK)

  1. Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) is less dangerous, whereas Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK) is more dangerous.
  2. Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) can be cured by proper diet and precautions, whereas proper medications are mandatory for Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis(HHNK).
  3. Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) is a common illness found in diabetic patients, whereas Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK) is a rare illness found in diabetes.
  4. Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) is observed from high blood pressure and sugar levels, whereas Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK ) is observed from stroke, coma, and eventually death.
  5. Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) shows symptoms in the short run, which works at a fast pace. In contrast, Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK) shows symptoms in the long run, which works at a slow pace.
  6. Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) is observed with ketoacidosis and a fruity odor from the mouth. In contrast, Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-Ketoacidosis (HHNK) is observed without ketoacidosis and with no odor change.

Last Updated : 11 June, 2023

dot 1
One request?

I’ve put so much effort writing this blog post to provide value to you. It’ll be very helpful for me, if you consider sharing it on social media or with your friends/family. SHARING IS ♥️

24 thoughts on “DKA vs HHNK: Difference and Comparison”

  1. The comparison table effectively highlights the contrasting features of DKA and HHNK, aiding readers in understanding the distinct characteristics and implications of these diabetic complications.

    • Absolutely. The table presents a clear and organized format for analyzing the differences between DKA and HHNK, making it easier for individuals to grasp the information effectively.

    • The comparison table serves as a valuable reference for healthcare professionals and patients alike, offering a comprehensive overview of the critical variances between DKA and HHNK.

  2. The detailed explanations of DKA and HHNK provide a thorough understanding of their respective clinical manifestations, making the article a valuable resource for medical practitioners and students alike.

    • I agree. The inclusion of such comprehensive insights into these diabetic emergencies can enhance medical education and contribute to better patient care and outcomes.

  3. It is concerning that diabetes has become so prevalent due to poor dietary habits. The article emphasizes the significance of a balanced diet and regular exercise in combating this health issue.

    • Indeed, the article serves as an important reminder to prioritize healthy eating and physical activity to manage and prevent diabetes. Education on this topic is crucial for public health.

  4. The detailed descriptions of DKA and HHNK provide valuable knowledge for healthcare professionals and individuals alike, fostering greater awareness and understanding of these serious diabetic complications.

    • Indeed. The comprehensive information presented in the article equips readers with the necessary insights to recognize and respond to the potential risks associated with DKA and HHNK, thereby promoting proactive healthcare.

  5. The distinction between DKA and HHNK in terms of nature, symptoms, and effects on patients is well-explained. This knowledge can inform individuals about the critical differences and risks associated with each condition.

    • I couldn’t agree more. The detailed overview of these medical emergencies can empower people to recognize warning signs and seek immediate medical help when necessary.

  6. The article’s focus on the symptoms, medications, and differences between DKA and HHNK underscores the necessity of early detection and appropriate treatment in mitigating the risks associated with these conditions.

    • I concur. Promoting awareness of the signs and symptoms of DKA and HHNK can empower individuals to take proactive steps in managing their health and seeking medical assistance when needed.

    • Absolutely. A strong emphasis on education, prevention, and management of DKA and HHNK is pivotal for addressing the public health implications related to diabetes and its complications.

  7. The article provides a comprehensive and in-depth understanding of diabetes and its complications. It is vital to raise awareness about the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle to prevent such life-threatening conditions.

    • I completely agree. The detailed comparison of DKA and HHNK provides valuable insights into their differences and the importance of early detection and appropriate treatment.

  8. The explanation of DKA and HHNK offers valuable insights into their respective nature and severity. It’s crucial to differentiate between these medical emergencies for prompt and effective interventions.

    • Absolutely. Understanding the symptoms and treatment options for DKA and HHNK is essential, and this article provides a clear and concise comparison to aid in better comprehension.

  9. The article’s thorough delineation of DKA and HHNK serves as an indispensable resource for medical education and patient awareness. It enhances understanding of the complexities associated with these conditions.

    • Absolutely. The depth and clarity of the article contribute to better knowledge dissemination among medical professionals and the general public, thereby improving overall comprehension of diabetic emergencies.

    • I agree. The informative nature of the article ensures that both healthcare practitioners and individuals can access valuable insights into DKA and HHNK, promoting better health outcomes and informed decision-making.

  10. The article effectively communicates the critical differences between DKA and HHNK, catering to a wide readership with varying levels of medical knowledge. The layman’s terms used make the information accessible to all.

    • I share the sentiment. The use of plain language to explain medical concepts ensures that the article is informative and understandable to a broad audience, which is crucial for disseminating important health information.

    • Absolutely. The clarity and accessibility of the article enable individuals from diverse backgrounds to comprehend the complexities of DKA and HHNK, thereby promoting wider awareness and understanding.


Leave a Comment

Want to save this article for later? Click the heart in the bottom right corner to save to your own articles box!