Nonketotic Hyperglycemia
Metabolic Health
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What is Nonketotic Hyperglycemia

Presently, people are dealing with certain severe conditions related to neural disorders, genetic deficiencies, and rare infections. Nonketotic Hyperglycemia (NKH) is one such genetic condition for which the specialists are often intimating their patients to take extensive care and preventive measures. This genetic condition is a severe neurological disorder leading to some specific health conditions. 


Nonketotic Hyperglycemia refers to the increased levels of glycine. Glycine is one of the essential glucose molecules in the body where abnormally increasing levels refer to the condition of Hyperglycemia. The genetic condition also indicates the genetic faults in the body's metabolism, and with growing age, it leads to some severe chemical transformations in the body. According to the present scenario, this condition is found in 1 in 60,000 newborn children. 

It is the metabolic imbalance in the body due to some inaccurate enzyme system. Here, the body's enzyme system breaks down the amino acid glycine, which is accumulated in the body through tissues and fluids. Several classifications and variations of this genetic condition convert into Hyperosmolar nonketotic Hyperglycemia, which generally occurs in a person with type 2 diabetes. All the classifications impact differently on different individuals as per the type of diabetes they are dealing with.


The primary cause of NKG reflects the abnormal level of glycine in the human body. Glycine is a type of amino acid building the body's protein content. The level of glycine in the body holds the core responsibility to manage specific neural and nervous system functioning. The breaking down of glycine builds up in high levels in the body, which abnormally causes genetic mutation. This abnormal mutation in the body leads to the typical and atypical symptoms of (NKH).

On an overview, NKH is the uncommon autosomal recessive genetic disorder in which people suffer in certain conditions. This condition occurs due to a single faulty gene from both parents (mother and father). It tends to increase glycine levels in the body to abnormal levels, impacting the body's nervous system, metabolic functions, and neural functioning. Indeed, the diagnosis of this genetic condition is quite challenging as it does not provide any powerful symptoms. 

How is Nonketotic Hyperglycinemia diagnosed?

The diagnosis of NKH may require a severe physical examination, behavioral observations, and the patients' medical history. Some of the standard tests relate to measuring the level of glycine in the body. Blood tests and urine tests are standard tests, and specialists also include advanced tests like MRI, EEG, and liver biopsy to diagnose advanced stages of this genetic condition. Therefore, the patient's physical examination and medical history play an essential role in diagnosing the NKH. Similar symptoms occurring in this condition occur in multiple health disorders. Hence to be specific, the specialist needs to detect this condition. Some of the major tests are included to measure the glycine level in the body. Some mild and intense categories in this genetic disorder may include conditions like Hyperosmolar Nonketotic Hyperglycemia. 

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What are the symptoms of Nonketotic Hyperglycinemia?

People dealing with NKH attain a different level of intensity and variable symptoms. There are very few observations of symptoms that can relate to any specific patterns in terms of gender, age, and health conditions. People may experience specific common and uncommon symptoms related to this genetic condition. Some of the common symptoms are listed below:  

  • Sudden lethargic experience
  • Constant hiccoughs 
  • Feeding abnormality
  • Temporary breathing difficulty 
  • Constant muscle jerking 
  • Decreased muscle tone 

Symptoms can be intense and highly uncommon, leading to abnormality and issues in normal routine activities. Infants often suffer severely in this Nonketotic Hyperglycemia with severe developmental disabilities, seizures, and other atypical symptoms. Some of the uncommon symptoms experience in NKH are listed below: 

  • Gastroesophageal reflux condition 
  • Abnormality in muscle movement 
  • Nervous system abnormality 
  • Intellectual disabilities 
  • Scoliosis
  • Seizures
  • Constant muscle tightening 
  • Behavioral disorders
  • Swallowing abnormality  

The genetic cleavage enzyme system receives several mutations which encode a profound impact on the basic functioning of the various system. In addition, this genetic condition receives autosomal recessive inheritance patterns where the child receives pathogenic variants of an enzyme to get affected with this severe condition. Therefore, there is undoubtedly a standard and atypical phase of symptoms that the people suffering from this genetic condition may experience. Therefore, infants or individuals suffering from this genetic condition need intensive care and attention. Also know about sugar in urine test.


This genetic disease, when diagnosed, needs special care and attention along with some advanced therapies. In the present medical platform, curative measures for NKH are remarkably absent. Therefore, being alert and observative is highly necessary for this genetic condition. Several related disorders associated with NKH refer to some severe health conditions. It includes conditions like Transient NKH, which is in the form of brain injury, Hyperglycinuria where urine contains abnormal glycine levels, and pyridoxal-phosphate Disorder, where children suffer from deficiency of Vitamin B6. Also read about the high blood sugar symptoms.


1.What is Nonketotic Hyperglycinemia (NKH) ?

Nonketotic Hyperglycemia is a serious health condition that occurs due to high glycine levels in the body's enzyme system. It is a severe genetic disorder where the glycine level in the body abnormally increases within the system, which impacts the body's metabolic system, neural health, and nervous system. 

2. How is Nonketotic Hyperglycinemia diagnosed?

The diagnosis of Nonketotic Hyperglycemia is through several standards and major medical tests after the patient receives specific symptoms. The standard test includes a blood test and urine test to measure the glycine level in the body. In addition, significant tests like MRI, EEG, and biopsy are helpful in the diagnosis of NKH. 

3. What is the Life expectancy in NKH?

People receive variable symptoms with NKH as a genetic disorder. However, the common symptoms receive specific behavioral and intellectual disabilities with constant depletion in the body system and its functions. As per the studies, on average, the life expectancy in NKH is around 2 years. 




This website's content is provided only for educational reasons and is not meant to be a replacement for professional medical advice. Due to individual differences, the reader should contact their physician to decide whether the material is applicable to their case.