What is the role of aldosterone measurement in the management of hypokalemia (low potassium level)?

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

A high aldosterone level with low renin activity suggests primary hyperaldosteronism. If the patient is hypertensive but the aldosterone level is low, this suggests one of the more unusual congenital forms of hypertension, such as Liddle syndrome, in which a mutation in the epithelial sodium channel produces uncontrollable sodium reabsorption or glucocorticoid-remediable hypertension. This scenario also could be produced by licorice ingestion or ingestion of a steroid with mineralocorticoid activity, such as prednisone or fludrocortisone.


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