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Revista Medica Herediana

Print version ISSN 1018-130X


MEZA HUAMAN, Aldo  and  CIEZA ZEVALLOS, Javier Antonio. Frequency and characteristics of electrolyte abnormalities in patients admitted to an internal Medicine services of a general hospital. Rev Med Hered [online]. 2016, vol.27, n.4, pp.237-242. ISSN 1018-130X.

Objectives: To determine the frequency of abnormalities in serum sodium and potassium in adult hospitalized patients and to evaluate annual variations of these electrolytes, as well as to evaluate variables related to patients, comorbidities and medical interventions. Methods: A prevalence study was conducted in 2015 at Hospital Cayetano Heredia (HCH) in Lima, Peru. Information on demographic features and on serum values of sodium and potassium, as we all as on comorbidities and treatment were gathered. Results: Information on 297 patients was collected; the prevalence of electrolyte abnormalities was 60.6%. Yearly variations of electrolyte abnormalities were nonsignificant (p>0.05). Hyponatremia was associated with pulmonary diseases (p=0.005) and hypernatremia was associated with the use of nebulization (p=0.023) and hospital stay longer than 5 days (p<0.008). Hypokalemia was associated with use of steroids (p<0.001) and with the use of antifungal medications (p<0.016); hyperkalemia was associated with renal disease (p=0.038), high serum levels of creatinine (p=0.0059) and low lymphocyte counts (p=0.004). Conclusions: The prevalence of abnormalities in serum electrolytes was high (60.6%) and it was independent of the season but dependent on certain comorbidities and with the use of certain medications.Hypokalemia was the most common electrolyte abnormality followed by hyponatremia.

Keywords : Sodium; potassium; hospitalization; electrolytes; epidemiology.

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