Hypokalaemia and hyperkalaemia
- aDepartment of Internal Medicine, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut, bDepartment of Internal Medicine, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio
- Dr M Soleimani, Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, University of Cincinnati Medical Center, 231 Albert Sabin Way, MSB 5502, Cincinnati, OH 45267–0585, USA
- Received 8 September 2000
- Accepted 14 June 2001
Disturbances in potassium homoeostasis presenting as low or high serum potassium are common, especially among hospitalised patients. Given the fact that untreated hypokalaemia or hyperkalaemia is associated with high morbidity and mortality, it is critical to recognise and treat these disorders promptly. In this article, normal potassium homoeostasis is reviewed initially and then a pathophysiological approach to work-up and management of hypokalaemia and hyperkalaemia is presented. Recent advances with respect to the role of kidney in handling of the potassium, the regulation of renal ion transporters in hypokalaemia, and treatment of hypokalaemia and hyperkalaemia will be discussed.