Pharmacology Rounds: Electrolyte Repletion

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Nurses Edition Commentary

Kathy Garvin, RN and Lisa Chavez, RN
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Jeremy W. -

Doesn't anybody run into the issue that MagOxide causes diarrhea in a lot of people?
I have to remind interns about other forms of Magnesium than oxide, b/c of the issue with diarrhea.
Despite that, Oxide seems to be the only mag for ORAL repletion in most hospital pharmacies.

Bryan H. -

Jeremy, thanks for the comments. Agree that oxide seems to be the most readily available oral magnesium form in many hospitals. Citrate and chloride are other forms on the market. Magnesium itself can cause diarrhea and the other salts are guilty too, though to a lesser extent (except citrate).

KB -

Great piece! The magnesium gave repletion parameters, is there a standard to go by for potassium? For example, what IV or po amounts to be given for serum corrections? Thank you!

Bryan H. -

Hi KB, thanks for the feedback! The literature I've seen estimates that the serum potassium concentration will increase by about 0.25 mEq/L for each 20 mEq of IV KCl administered.

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