Elevated Potassium - Hyperkalemia
Continuing Medical Education
Hyperkalemia, elevated serum potassium and the current approach to the diagnosis and treatment of potassium disorders. CME Eligible.
Eligible for FibonacciCME Credit
Members: Log into APP for Online CME Test
by Kruti Vora, MD, M.C.A. Butman and M.P. Butman, MD
“Hyperkalemia” refers to an elevated serum potassium level. In most cases, this occurs when the kidneys are unable to excrete potassium and is usually due to diseases that damage the kidneys, disorders that affect their ability to excrete potassium, diseases that raise potassium levels independent of any problem with the kidneys, or a combination of the aforementioned. The most common causes of chronic kidney damage is diabetes and hypertension. Kidney damage may also occur acutely from dehydration, hypotension, kidney stones, iodinated contrast used in imaging, and the adverse effects of a myriad of medications including antibiotics, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors, angiotensin II blockers, immunotherapeutic agents, chemotherapy, IVIG, and antiretroviral therapy.
Disorders that raise potassium levels in a setting of normal kidney function include abnormalities of the adrenal glands (e.g. Addison’s disease/adrenal insufficiency,acquired hyporeninemic hypoaldosteronism, congenital adrenal hyperplasia), hemolysis, tumor lysis, constipation, and metabolic acidosis. . .
Signs and Symptoms of Significant Hyperkalemia
Treatment of Hyperkalemia
Other Causes of Hyperkalemia
FibonacciMD Patient Handout for chronic Hyperkalemia
FibonacciMD APP Members: Take the CME test
Not an APP member? Membership info.
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Kruti Vora, M.D.
Dr. Vora attended Harvard Medical School and has started her internship in the Department of Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts. Her interests are in medical oncology, advocating for health equity, mentorship, and medical education.
M.C.A. Butman and M.P. Butman, MD
High potassium (hyperkalemia) When to see a doctor. (2018, January 11). Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms/hyperkalemia/basics/when-to-see-doctor/sym-20050776
Low potassium (hypokalemia). (2020, July 11). Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms/low-potassium/basics/definition/sym-20050632
Lewis, J. L., By, Lewis, J. L., & Last full review/revision Apr 2020| Content last modified Apr 2020. (n.d.). Overview of Potassium's Role in the Body - Hormonal and Metabolic Disorders. Retrieved from https://www.merckmanuals.com/home/hormonal-and-metabolic-disorders/electrolyte-balance/overview-of-potassium-s-role-in-the-body
Potassium Test. (2020, August 19). Retrieved from https://www.ucsfhealth.org/medical-tests/003484
Office of Dietary Supplements - Potassium. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Potassium-HealthProfessional/
Guideline: Potassium intake for adults and children. (2012). Retrieved from https://www.who.int/nutrition/publications/guidelines/potassium_intake_printversion.pdf
Appendix 10. Food Sources of Potassium. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://health.gov/our-work/food-nutrition/2015-2020-dietary-guidelines/guidelines/appendix-10/
Lowering your potassium levels. (2017, June). Retrieved from https://renal.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/KCUK-Potassium_web.pdf
Patient education: Low-potassium diet (Beyond the Basics). (2019, October 15). Retrieved from https://www.uptodate.com/contents/low-potassium-diet-beyond-the-basics#H5
Asirvatham, J., Bjornson, L., & Moses, V. (2013). Errors in potassium measurement: A laboratory perspective for the clinician. North American Journal of Medical Sciences, 5(4), 255. doi:10.4103/1947-2714.110426
Jain A, Tauseef A, Hasan S, Jain S, Wazir M, Majeed U. Pseudohyperkalemia: To Treat or not to Treat Cureus. 2018 Nov; 10(11): e3570. Published online 2018 Nov 10. doi: 10.7759/cureus.3570 PMCID: PMC6329613 PMID: 30648102
Cotton S. What Is Pseudohyperkalemia and What Should Labs Do About It? AACC. Scientific Shorts. Oct. 23, 2019.
Hollander-Rodriguez JC, Calvert JF. Hyperkalemia. Am FaPhysician. 2006;73:283-290.
IMIT takes pride in its work, and the information published on the IMIT Platform is believed to be accurate and reliable. The IMIT Platform is provided strictly for informational purposes, and IMIT recommends that any medical, diagnostic, or other advice be obtained from a medical professional. Read full disclaimer.