Did you know about 15-20% of drivers are diabetic?  That is an average of 1 in every 7 drivers.  Diabetes is a medical condition in which blood sugars may be too high or too low.  The liver is the main organ in the body affected by diabetes.  The liver is also the main organ in the body to rid the body of alcohol.  When a diabetic consumes alcohol, their blood sugars begin to drop, and the liver responds to ridding the alcohol instead of its main job of regulating blood glucose levels.  Hypoglycemia (extremely low blood sugar) and hyperglycemia also known as ketoacidosis (extremely high blood sugar), show signs of sleepiness, dizziness, disorientation, and production of acetone on the breath.  When a police officer makes a stop, these are signs similar to a Wisconsin drunk driver.

Low Blood Sugar Cause for a Wisconsin DUI

Some reasons for hypoglycemia are lack of food and ingestion of alcohol.  Signs of hypoglycemia include headache, weakness, irritability, lack of muscle coordination, and apprehension.  A police officer looking for signs of a drunk driver takes notes of coordination, understanding direction, and cooperation during field sobriety testing.

Can a Wisconsin DUI Breath Test Clear a Diabetic?

The answer is No.  It is likely a breath test for a Wisconsin DUI will show a false positive or a falsely high BAC reading.  While many believe a breathalyzer tests for alcohol, they are correct, but the machine tests for all types in the methyl group.  The machine is programmed to assume that the compound is “probably” alcohol.  A hyperglycemic diabetic in a state of ketoacidosis will produce acetone, which is in the same group as alcohol known as the methyl group.  Ketoacidosis can produce an odor on the breath of fruit or nail polish remover.  While in a state of ketoacidosis, the results of a WI DUI breath test will most likely show a BAC well over the legal limit.

Wisconsin DUI Blood Test Diabetes

The science of testing blood for a Wisconsin DUI is known as gas chromatography.  By using a gas chromatograph (GC), chemical compounds (like alcohol) are separated and quantified (BAC Level).  Your blood is tested using gas chromatography and a process known as “head space”, or Head Space GC.  In a well maintained gas chromatograph, compounds are adequately separated creating clear results.  If the machine is not maintained or calibrated correctly, compounds within your blood may not separate causing inaccurate BAC results.

Hire Wisconsin DUI Defense Attorney Nathan J. Dineen

If you have diabetes and were wrongly accused of driving drunk in Wisconsin, contact Attorney Nathan J. Dineen.  Attorney Dineen practices 100% DUI Defense in Wisconsin.  He has a complete understanding of the breathalyzer equipment used for a Wisconsin DUI breath test and the procedure of extracting drugs and alcohol through the process of gas chromatography.  Contact him at 877-384-6800 for a Free Case Review.