Electrolytes - Potassium.doc - Potassium(K 3.5 – 5.0...

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Potassium (K+) 3.5 – 5.0 MEq/L Major Cation of ICF (98%) Function: 1. Regulates intracellular osmolality and 2. Promotes cellular growth K+ moves into cells during formation of new tissues and leaves the cell during tissue breakdown 3. Sodium-potassium pump Adequate intracellular magnesium is necessary for normal function of the pump (fueled by the breakdown of ATP) 4. Neuromuscular and cardiac function 5. Assists in regulation of acid-base balance by cellular exchange with H+ Regulation : Dietary intake (source of potassium) Loss of potassium o Primarily via kidneys (90% elimination) Body conserves K+ poorly, so, any condition that ↑ UOP will ↓ serum K+ concentration o GI secretions, stool o Sweat Aldosterone Factors that cause Na+ retention (↓ blood volume, ↑ aldosterone) ----will cause K+ loss in urine Hypokalemia: Causes: o Abnormal losses via kidneys or GI tract Renal increased UOP, K+ wasting diuretics GI diarrhea, laxative abuse, vomiting, & ileostomy drainage, NG drainage o Hyperaldosteronism o Shift of K+ into cells Insulin Alkalosis Beta-adrenergic stimulation (catecholamine release in stress, coronary ischemia, delirium tremens, B-agonists medications)
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