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Potassium Levels Low

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Okay, I used the search function and didn't find what I was looking for, so I decided to go ahead and post this. If I'm repeating something that's already been posted, please have patience with me and point me to where it is located.

I had a really bad week and have been to the ER Wednesday night and Friday night for my heart beating too fast and skipping beats and not being able to breath. Both times my Potassium levels were low. I thought I remembered some people mentioning that they had consistant low potassium levels, or something along that line. I'm wondering if anyone else has low potassium or did have low levels, and if this means anything in particular.

On a side note: My labs from the 2nd trip to the ER also showed that my liver isn't working right. The ER doc said it could be hepitatis (sp?) or medications messing with my liver. I called my doc and due to processing problems at the ER we're going to wait a few days and have the labs repeated. If they still show liver problems then I'm going to have an ultrasound of the gallbladder to see what it says.

Thanks for any help or suggestions y'all!!

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I may be wrong on this, but here goes one attempt at an answer......

Your intake of fluids is high to help out with the POTS symptoms -- right? Well, such a high fluid intake tends to deplete certain water soluble minerals in the body including -- you guessed it -- potassium. That's why sometimes a potassium supplement is advocated because the fluid intake remains a "must".

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None of us our medical professionals - what we say is just from our own experiences or research, which may have nothing to do with you.

Electrolyte dilution- That can be true but it can also be an indication of many other things or nothing at all. If it were that she had diluted her electrolytes down then everything would be low. She can have chronic diarrhea/vomiting, certain prescriptions, diet habits; that can cause hypokalemia.

If her electrolytes had been low for awhile she would have other hypokalemic symptoms like muscle cramps, muscle weakness, palpitation, nausea/vomiting, depression, confusion, polyuria.

I have had periods of hypokalemia (low potassium) but nothing else has been diagnosed. I have severe muscle cramps in my calves to the point that it is hard to walk when my potassium is low and now I just try to eat a banana a day to help.

I had a friend who started a new job and had to have a pre-physcial. His liver test was elevated and lytes were a little off. They sent him back for follow up in 3-6 months and everything was normal.

But if you would like information about hypokalemia I have attached a web link

http://www.ahealthyme.com/article/gale/100084746 or


What did the ER doctor say to you about the combination hypokalemia and liver test? Did they prescribe potassium for you? If they thought it was serious they probably would have kept you overnight for further testing.

OK that's my 2 cents (non-medical professional)

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I know that none of us are docs. Sometimes I wish we were, but other times I don't want to know any more than I have too. :P:D They wanted me to have the liver ultrasound right away, but the ultrasound tech had already gone home for the night and wouldn't be back until the morning. So they wanted me to come back in the morning as soon as he got there and have it done. The ER doc also gave me a prescription for potassium suppliments which the on-call doc at my doc's office agreed with.

We're not entirely sure the labs that we got back were actually mine. The blood was taken at 10:00 that night, but the labels weren't sent to the lab until almost 1:00 am. Most of the levels match within a few points my labs from Wednesday night, but Wed.'s labs didn't test for the liver stuff. So on the advice of my doc we're going to wait until probably Monday and go to my PCP and have it done again. We're going to go ahead and get the potassium prescription filled on Monday when the pharmacy opens up again.

The ER doc kept saying hepatits. Nothing else showed that, but he didn't seem to listen to much that I said anyway. He didn't even call the on-call doc until 1:00am when he finally relased me. He was supposed to call him to consult on what to do with me and we kept telling the ER doc to call my doc! He didn't seem to believe most of what I and my parents were telling him either.

POTSparent, that is a good idea. That was actually the first thing they checked for at the ER and said "unfortunately everything else is normal." I think the doc could have used a class in bedside manners.

THANKS for both of y'all's input!!

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Strangely enuf, everytime I have been sick enuf to either go to the doctor or ER my potassium is always low. I was told it was because I take Florinef??? who knows. I also try and eat a banana everyday. Potato's also have potassium.


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Really Potatoes? Good to know, I eat a lot of those too!

I hate the treatment some people get at ED's. You know what they need to develop is a service. One that you can have doctors call for all of your medical history. Someone that will advocate for you when your ill and say yes they have had this going on or that. Someone that can list out your medications and what doctors you see, regarding what problem. Someone that is assertive and will make your case for you.

steph :P

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