oa South African Medical Journal - The importance of potassium in medical and surgical patients

Volume 25, Issue 8
  • ISSN : 0256-9574
  • E-ISSN: 2078-5135



A practical account of the use of potassium in therapy is presented. Disregard for or ignorance of electrolytic imbalances may have been responsible for preventable deaths in certain patients. The basic physiology of potassium blood levels, alkalaemia, and acidaemia is mentioned. The various clinical conditions presenting hypopotassaemia are discussed. Clinical signs and symptoms in hypo- and hyperpotassaemia are noted along with E.C.G. records. Therapeutic applications of potassium chloride are suggested, and chemical solutions specified. A plan for a logical series of biochemical investigations is advised.

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