How should treatment of hypokalemia (low potassium level) be individualized?

Updated: Dec 06, 2018
  • Author: Eleanor Lederer, MD, FASN; Chief Editor: Vecihi Batuman, MD, FASN  more...
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Answer

Tailor treatment to the individual patient. For example, if diuretics cannot be discontinued because of an underlying disorder such as heart failure, institute potassium-sparing therapies, such as a low-sodium diet, potassium-sparing diuretics, ACE inhibitors, and angiotensin receptor blockers.

The low-sodium diet and potassium-sparing diuretics limit the amount of sodium reabsorbed at the cortical collecting tubule, thus limiting the amount of potassium secreted. ACE inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers inhibit the release of aldosterone, thus blocking the kaliuretic effects of that hormone.


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