How is an acute episode of hypokalemia (low potassium level) managed?

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

For otherwise healthy patients undergoing what appears to be an acute episode, such as severe diarrhea, causing hypokalemia, no further follow-up care is required. For patients who are likely to develop hypokalemia again (eg, those requiring long-term diuretic therapy), periodic monitoring of serum potassium levels is essential. If not performed during hospitalization, then outpatient follow-up care with tests such as 24-hour urine cortisol and aldosterone is acceptable.


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