The effect of acute potassium deficiency on neuromuscular transmission and cardiac action is readily recognized and can be promptly repaired by administration of potassium salts. The consequences of long-standing potassium depletion, including both functional and anatomical changes in kidneys, heart and muscle are not so generally appreciated. Chronic depletion of potassium follows prolonged inability to ingest and absorb dietary potassium, or loss through persistent diarrhea or abuse of laxatives. Potassium may be lost in urine because of disease involving the renal tubules, or during dehydration, acidosis, or other disorders which impair normal renal conservation of potassium. Excessive "mineralocorticoid" action, due
THE SYNDROME OF MINERALOCORTICOID EXCESS. Ann Intern Med. 1958;48:1424–1431. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-48-6-1424
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1958;48(6):1424-1431.
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