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Sao Paulo Medical Journal

Print version ISSN 1516-3180On-line version ISSN 1806-9460


MOREIRA, Rodrigo Oliveira et al. Insulin autoimmune syndrome: case report. Sao Paulo Med. J. [online]. 2004, vol.122, n.4, pp.178-180. ISSN 1516-3180.

CONTEXT: Insulin autoimmune syndrome (IAS, Hirata disease) is a rare cause of hypoglycemia in Western countries. It is characterized by hypoglycemic episodes, elevated insulin levels, and positive insulin antibodies. Our objective is to report a case of IAS identified in South America. CASE REPORT: A 56-year-old Caucasian male patient started presenting neuroglycopenic symptoms during hospitalization due to severe trauma. Biochemical evaluation confirmed hypoglycemia and abnormally high levels of insulin. Conventional imaging examinations were negative for pancreatic tumor. Insulin antibodies were above the normal range. Clinical remission of the episodes was not achieved with verapamil and steroids. Thus, a subtotal pancreatectomy was performed due to the lack of response to conservative treatment and because immunosuppressants were contraindicated due to bacteremia. Histopathological examination revealed diffuse hypertrophy of beta cells. The patient continues to have high insulin levels but is almost free of hypoglycemic episodes.

Keywords : Hypoglycemia; Hyperinsulinism; Insulin; Pancreatectomy; Insulin antibodies.

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