Electrolyte Deficiency: Symptoms & Treatment for Electrolyte Shortage

Electrolyte Deficiency

Sodium chloride, calcium and potassium are electrolytes present in our body. These are present in all the body fluids such as blood, urine, etc. Sometimes the level of the electrolytes may increase or decrease.

By and large an imbalance occurs due to: diarrhea, vomiting, pneumonia, chronic obstructive disease, and renal failure.

Alcoholism, mal absorption, hormonal disorders, also result in imbalance. Certain drugs such as: diuretics, anti-biotics and chemotherapy are important triggers.

Electrolyte Deficiency Symptoms

The commonest manifestations are:

  • Exhaustion
  • Muscle cramps and spasms
  • Restlessness
  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Dry mouth
  • Giddiness, fainting
  • Confusion
  • Bad temper

A severe imbalance may cause these clinical features:

  • Slow heart rate
  • Convulsions, seizures
  • Low blood pressure
  • Palpitations
  • Poor coordination
  • Coma

Electrolyte Deficiency Treatment

It is vital to distinguish the symptoms promptly and start the treatment promptly. By and large, the treatment is based on the cause and the severity of the symptoms. It is necessary to fight dehydration related to the electrolyte imbalance. The doctor may also prescribe electrolyte drinks, since plain water may not supply all the essential electrolytes. If the symptoms worsen consult your physician without delay.

Blood and urine test may be required to diagnose the condition. Sometimes, an X-ray may be needed to diagnose kidney ailments. Increase your intake of foods that supply loads of potassium and calcium. Severe cases may need hospitalization and IV fluids administration to bring the electrolytes to normal the level.

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