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WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
Hyperkalemia is a high level of potassium in your blood. Potassium helps control how your muscles, heart, and digestive system work.
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- Sodium polystyrene sulfonate decreases the amount of potassium in your blood.
- Diuretics , or water pills, help your body get rid of extra potassium when you urinate.
- Calcium may help prevent the symptoms of hyperkalemia, such as cardiac arrhythmias.
- Insulin will help lower your potassium levels.
- Blood tests will be done every 2 to 4 hours to monitor your potassium level.
- Telemetry is continuous monitoring of your heart rhythm. Sticky pads placed on your skin connect to an EKG machine that records your heart rhythm.
Dialysis may be needed if other treatments do not work. Dialysis uses a machine to remove waste products and toxins from your blood.
A dietitian may meet with you to plan the best way to limit how much potassium you eat. Foods that are high in potassium include bananas, tomatoes, oranges, turkey, and milk. Orange juice, citrus juices, and tomato juice are also high in potassium. Do not use salt substitutes.
Hyperkalemia may cause changes in muscle control and heart damage. This can be life-threatening. Without treatment, your symptoms will worsen.
CARE AGREEMENT:You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your caregivers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.