2. The Effect Itself

Somogyi believed insulin therapy itself might play a role in causing unstable diabetes. Normally, a person with diabetes uses insulin in response to high blood sugar levels or hyperglycemia. However, excessive insulin may result in dangerously low blood sugar levels or hypoglycemia. Somogyi believed that hypoglycemia without treatment could cause a rebound in blood sugar levels. Essentially, taking too much insulin at night would cause hypoglycemia while a person sleeps. In response, the body releases hormones such as glucagon, epinephrine, cortisol, and growth hormone. Glucagon causes the liver to release glucose, leading to high blood sugar levels while the other hormones create resistance to insulin.

Somogyi vgajic / Getty Images
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