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If you have questions or are concerned, call Pediatric Endocrinology at 617-726-2909.

How do I test my child's urine for ketones?

Here is how to test your child's urine for ketones:

  1. Open the ketone testing kit.
  2. Have your child urinate into a clean container, such as a disposable cup or bowl. If you have a daughter who has her period, try to prevent menstrual (period) blood from mixing with the urine.
  3. Open the testing strip and dip it into the urine. Shake off the extra urine into the toilet or the container your child urinated in.
  4. Wait for the testing strip to change color.
  5. Compare the color of the testing strip to the color on the box to see if your child has ketones.
  • If the color is light, test the urine again in 2 hours. Follow steps 2-6. Call the doctor after testing. This means your child’s body is starting to make more ketones.
  • If the color is medium or dark, call your child’s doctor right away for next steps.

What is ketoacidosis?

Ketoacidosis is a life-threatening condition in which there is a high number of ketones in the blood. Call the doctor if you child shows any of these signs of ketoacidosis:

Early signs

  • Thirst or a very dry mouth
  • Frequent urination
  • High blood sugar levels
  • High ketone levels

Other signs

  • Constantly feeling tired
  • Dry or flushed (red) skin
  • Nausea, vomiting or stomach pain
  • Trouble breathing
  • A fruity smell on the breath
  • Trouble focusing or feeling confused

Learn more

Rev. 3/2018. Reviewed by the MGfC Family Advisory Council.