Despite a greater awareness of hyperinsulinaemic hypoglycaemia, one in three patients has some degree of mental retardation by the time the diagnosis is made. The diagnosis is established by demonstrating high plasma insulin concentrations during an episode of hypoglycaemia. Twenty one hyperinsulinaemic infants and children were referred for surgical treatment after failing to respond to medical management. The surgical procedure of choice is a 95% pancreatectomy. Recurrence of the hypoglycaemia may develop after less radical resections as occurred in one patient who then underwent an extended resection 72 hours postoperatively. Patients who fail to respond to optimal medical treatment should be referred for surgery early and not as a last resort if permanent neurological damage is to be avoided.
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