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Total Body Potassium in Long-Term Frusemide Therapy: Is Potassium Supplementation Necessary?

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Publication Date
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PMC
Keywords
  • Papers And Originals
Disciplines
  • Medicine

Abstract

Measurements of total body potassium (T.B.K.) were made by whole-body counting in four groups of patients receiving oral frusemide for one year. Patients in group 1 had essential hypertension and normal renal function and received 40 mg frusemide daily without potassium supplements. Patients in group 2 were similar but received oral potassium supplements for the first four months of treatment. Patients in group 3 had hypertension associated with renal disease and received 120 mg frusemide daily without potassium supplements. Patients in group 4 also had hypertension and renal impairment and in addition to 120 mg frusemide daily they received oral potassium supplements for four months. No evidence of depletion of T.B.K. was found in any of the groups after continuous treatment with frusemide for one year. It is questioned whether potassium supplementation in long term diuretic therapy with frusemide is necessary unless there is evidence of pre-existing potassium depletion or of some other factor such as cardiac failure, cirrhosis of the liver, or the nephrotic syndrome.

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