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  • • Renal insufficiency

    • Elevated serum magnesium




  • • Usually occurs in patients with renal disease

    • Rare in surgical patients


Symptoms and Signs


  • • Lethargy

    • Weakness

    • Widened QRS complex

    • Depressed ST segment

    • Peaked T waves


  • • When serum level reaches 6 mEq/L, deep tendon reflexes are lost

    • Levels > 10 mEq/L can lead to somnolence, coma, and death


  • • Magnesium should be carefully monitored in patients with renal insufficiency

    • Serum levels

    • ECG


  • • IV isotonic saline to increase renal excretion

    • Slow IV infusion of calcium

    • Dialysis may be necessary




  • • Isotonic saline infusion

    • Calcium gluconate infusion


Treatment Monitoring


  • • ECG monitoring

    • Serum magnesium levels




  • • Excellent if treated




  • • Regulation of magnesium intake in patients with renal insufficiency



Whang R. Clinical disorders of magnesium metabolism. Compr Ther. 1997;23:168.  [PubMed: 9113454]
Onishi S. Yoshino S. Cathartic-induced fatal hypermagnesemia in the elderly. Internal Medicine. 2006, 45(4):207-10.  [PubMed: 16543690]

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