Following acute insulin-induced hypoglycaemia, an abnormal pattern of insulin secretion in response to a meal has been demonstrated in six healthy volunteers. This is characterised by an initial impairment in insulin secretion and late hyperinsulinaemia. Postprandial gastrointestinal hormone levels were normal following hypoglycaemia in these subjects. In four other subjects, the administration of intravenous glucose prior to the meal partially reversed the abnormal pattern of secretion. In two patients with a total pre-ganglionic sympathectomy, the pattern of blood glucose, plasma insulin and C-peptide was similar to that observed following hypoglycaemia in normal subjects. It is unlikely that an abnormal entero-insular axis or an elevation of plasma catecholamine levels are primarily responsible for this phenomenon. This effect of hypoglycaemia on postprandial insulin secretion may be caused by glucopenia of the pancreatic beta cells.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Clinical Biochemistry
- Biochemistry, medical