Fluid and electrolyte abnormalities can become life-threatening in ambulatory or hospitalized patients. Their prevention or prompt and safe correction are a challenge to the hospital and clinic and many health professionals including physicians, nurses, pharmacists, and laboratory personnel. Optimal performance requires scientific knowledge, skills, equipment, and facilities coordinated through effective administration. The problem may be straightforward, hypokalemia from chronic diuretic therapy for hypertension; or complex, microbial contamination of intravenous fluids.
The Drug Spotlight focuses on these problems during this quarter and suggests one of these questions for study by hospital pharmacy and therapeutic committees:
1. Is the fluid and electrolyte