Fluid And Electrolyte Disorders
General Information on Fluid And Electrolyte Disorders
Fluid and electrolyte disorders are a series of disorders caused by an imbalance of essential fluids and electrolytes in the body. Electrolytes are important minerals found in the body that maintain a variety of cellular functions. The most prevalent electrolytes found in humans are potassium, calcium, magnesium, sodium, phosphate, chloride, and bicarbonate. Electrolyte disorders can occur at any age and from a series of medical conditions.
Symptoms of Fluid And Electrolyte Disorders
Symptoms may vary depending on whether the electrolyte imbalance is high (hyper) or low (hypo). Additionally, symptoms may vary depending on what electrolytes are imbalanced. Common symptoms include:
Changes in urination (increased or decreased)
Puffy legs, hands, face, or stomach
Changes in mental status
Fast or slow heart beat
Treatments For Fluid And Electrolyte Disorders
Diagnostic procedures will include a physical exam and blood studies of electrolyte levels. Subsequent treatment will depend on the underlying cause. Common forms of treatment include dietary changes and increased or decreased fluid intake, and drug therapy. If the electrolyte imbalance is suspected to be a result of medication, discontinuation of the drug and new prescription may be required. Other treatment steps will include correcting electrolyte imbalance by replacing replenishing depleted minerals and reducing mineral concentration in patients with fluid retention. In severe cases, some patients may require hospital care and IV treatment. In patients with kidney disorders, dialysis may be necessary. If you are experiencing symptoms similar to those listed above, contact your doctor for further diagnosis.
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