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Archivos de Medicina Interna

Print version ISSN 0250-3816On-line version ISSN 1688-423X


BOADA, Matilde et al. Severe hyperkalemia in the emergency: Clinical manifestations and therapeutic management on three cases. Arch. Med Int [online]. 2012, vol.34, n.3, pp.91-94. ISSN 0250-3816.

ABSTRACT:: Arch Med Interna 2012 - 34(3):91-94 Hyperkalemia is defined as the elevation of serum potassium levels over 5.5 mEq/L. It is an electrolytic disorder that may lead to lethal clinical complications, with cardiovascular and muscular events being the worst. It results from a reduction of potassium excretion by the kidney, body distribution from the intracellular to the extracellular space, or an increased intake or administration of the ion. The clinical impact depends on a number of factors, including the severity of the hyperkalemia, its rate of onset and the co-existence with other ionic imbalances. The paper discusses two patients that sought care at the emergency department with severe hyperkalemia. They both presented with electrocardiographic disorders, and they both required hemodialysis. The therapeutic strategy consists of antagonizing the effects at the level of the cell membrane, facilitating the transfer of potassium into the cell and removing the excessive ion from the body. The authors emphasize the importance of an early detection and diagnosis of the clinical impact of hyperkalemia in the patients at risk of developing the disorder

Keywords : Hyperkalemia; Hyperkalemia-induced ECG changes.

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