A 31-year-old patient with type 1 diabetes uses about 25 units of Humalog insulin in a typical day. Using the 500 Rule, the approximate insulin-to-carbohydrate ratio for this patient would be:

 

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Correct

- 1:20

- 1:10

- 1:15

- 1:25

Rationale

"1:20" is correct. The insulin-to-carbohydrate ratio is a method of calculating carbohydrate needs when meal planning for a diabetic patient. The 500 rule assumes that a diabetic patient consumes approximately 500 grams of carbohydrates per day. To calculate the insulin-to-carbohydrate ratio, the nurse should take 500 and divide it by the total amount of insulin used each day. In this case, 500/25 equals 20, so the insulin-to-carbohydrate ratio would be 1:20.

"1:10", "1:15" and "1:25" are incorrect; see explanation in the correct answer.

References:
Walsh, J. (2003). Using insulin: Everything you need for success with insulin. San Diego, CA.: Torrey Pines Press.

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