How to diagnose potassium deficiency

Posted by Ruby Tequin on

According to Medscape, hypokalemia or potassium deficiency is a medical condition in which the serum potassium level in the bloodstream is less than 3.5 mEq/L (3.5 mmol/L). In most cases, this condition, especially during its early stage, does not show symptoms until the serum potassium level becomes extremely low.

There are a lot of possible factors that contribute to the decrease of potassium levels in our body. For instance, patients who are given certain diuretics such as hydrochlorothiazide (Hydrodiuril) or furosemide (Lasix) are prone to developing a potassium deficiency.


Your doctor will perform a history check and a physical examination to evaluate possible symptoms of hypokalemia. Additionally, he or she will perform a series of tests such as urine potassium and serum magnesium assay to determine the mineral and vitamin levels in your bloodstream.

For serious cases of hypokalemia, an electrocardiography (ECG) test is needed to be performed. This is because hypokalemia and heart abnormalities are commonly linked.


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