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Doctor insights on: Pathophysiology Of Hypernatremia

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What are some symptoms of hypernatremia?

What are some symptoms of hypernatremia?

Thirst and Others: Early symptoms of hypernatremia include thirst, dehydration, lethargy, irritability, disorientation, confusion, and weakness. However, severe symptoms include tremor, rigidity, seizures, coma, and death. The neurological symptoms are associated with rapid changes in the serum sodium. Slower changes are better tolerated. ...Read more

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Dr. Edward Kim
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What does hypernatremia mean?

See below: Too much sodium and not enough water. It is common for elder population to become dehydration due to dementia, not enough water while on tube feeding, infection such as pneumonia for example, and malnutrition. ...Read more

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Dr. Edward Kim
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I have been diagnosed with hypernatremia. How do you treat this?

I have been diagnosed with hypernatremia. How do you treat this?

Increase water intal: Hypernatremia means your body has less water. So, either you are not drinking enough water or losing lot of water from your body. You need to undergo blood and urine test to find the cause. The first step is to drink enough free water and then treat the cause. ...Read more

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Why do elderly people often get hypernatremia?

Why do elderly people often get hypernatremia?

Water depletion: Great question, one that many in the med field don't quite understand. Hypernatremia (high blood sodium level) is a water dehydration state. Hyponatremia is a water excess ('intoxicated' state--it takes a mental disorder to drink so much water that it lowers serum sodium). When elderly don't drink enough water, are on a diuretic, gets a fever or uti, they easily get water depleted, hypernatremic. ...Read more

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When treating hypernatremia why is normal saline preferred over ½ normal saline?

When treating hypernatremia why is normal saline preferred over ½ normal saline?

IV fluids: One of the reasons people who are dehydrated (d) receive Normal Saline (ns) is that they are hypotensive from whatever caused their d. If they are not hypotensive it is more prudent that they receive 1/2 saline to give them fluid in excess of salt. An alternate IV therapy for d is giving those patients 5% dextrose which delivers no sodium to them, if they are not hypotensive. ...Read more

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How do you prevent hypernatremia?

How do you prevent hypernatremia?

Drink water: Most patients who develop hypernatremia are not able to get enough water. This can occur in setting of environmental exposure, or in healthcare settings when patients have dementia or stroke. The latter two conditions can diminish the thirst reflex which is normally very powerful. Many nursing home patients also develop this as they are not able to get water to drink and rely of staff to provide. ...Read more

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Dr. Edward Kim
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Can hyperkalemia and hypernatremia occur at the same time from IV fluid?

Can hyperkalemia and hypernatremia occur at the same time from IV fluid?

Possibly: Electrolyte abnormalities are common in hospitalized patients and can result from multiple factors. They often result from a patient's underlying condition. Intravenous fluid composition could also play a role. You should discuss with your doctor for specific answers in a specific situation. ...Read more

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How does hyperventilation cause hypernatremia?

How does hyperventilation cause hypernatremia?

It doesnt: Plasma sodium levels are influenced by fluid volume not respiratory rate. ...Read more

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(1) Can hypernatremia be live-threatening?, and (2) Can hypernatremia be an underlying cause of delirium?

(1) Can hypernatremia be live-threatening?, and (2) Can hypernatremia be an underlying cause of delirium?

Yes and no: Yes, hypernatremia if severe enough, can be life threatening, although this is rare. Hypernatremia itself is unlikely to cause delirium, (it can cause a coma, but not delirium), however the underlying cause of the hypernatremia can cause delirium. ...Read more

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Is it possible for hyperkalemia and hypernatremia occur at the same time?

Possibly yes: Dehydration is the most common cause for both. Also certain medication may play this role. Your physician would have to look the whole picture on why this person developed both. ...Read more

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Dr. Edward Kim
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