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Hypertension, Hypokalemia, Suppressed Plasma Renin Activity and Aldosteronopenia Induced by Ingestion of Licorice.

David R. Rovner, M.D., F.A.C.P.; Jerome W. Conn, M.D., F.A.C.P.; and Edwin L. Cohen, M.D.
Ann Intern Med. 1967;66(5):1061. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-66-5-1061_1
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Glycyrrhizic acid is a potent sodium-retaining substance existing in high concentration in licorice extract. Previous reports from this laboratory have documented the great sodium retention and potassium diuresis that follow administration of ammonium glycyrrhizate to normal subjects. More recently, we have suggested that plasma renin activity (PRA) should be suppressed by ingestion of excessive amounts of licorice.

A 58-year-old hypertensive man was admitted for study because of severe muscular weakness of 48 hr duration. Serum sodium was 148 mEq/liter, serum potassium, 1.6 mEq/liter, and urinary protein, 2.2 g/day. He had ingested two to three 36-g licorice candy bars per day


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