Document Detail

Potassium loss, ventricular irritability, and the risk of sudden death in hypertensive patients.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  3732099     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
In the past, potassium depletion in both non-digitalised patients and in patients without cardiac disease was thought to cause no adverse cardiac effects. However, several studies have now demonstrated a significant incidence of ventricular ectopic activity (VEA) with diuretic-induced hypokalaemia, even in hypertensive patients without overt heart disease. Additional evidence suggests that sudden death may occasionally result from this VEA. Potassium repletion with potassium-sparing diuretics or with potassium chloride supplementation has generally demonstrated a beneficial therapeutic effect in reducing VEA. However, after diuretic therapy occasional patients may have persistent VEA which may result from focal myocardial lesions associated with potassium depletion. In contrast, diuretic therapy in which normokalaemia is maintained has only been associated with a very low occurrence of VEA. Thus, with the preservation of normokalaemia, diuretic therapy for hypertension does not appear to be associated with the significant hazards of VEA.
O B Holland
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Drugs     Volume:  31 Suppl 4     ISSN:  0012-6667     ISO Abbreviation:  Drugs     Publication Date:  1986  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1986-09-25     Completed Date:  1986-09-25     Revised Date:  2007-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7600076     Medline TA:  Drugs     Country:  NEW ZEALAND    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  78-84     Citation Subset:  IM    
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MeSH Terms
Amiloride / therapeutic use
Arrhythmias, Cardiac / chemically induced*,  metabolism
Death, Sudden / etiology
Diuretics / adverse effects*
Hypertension / drug therapy*
Hypokalemia / chemically induced*,  complications,  drug therapy
Magnesium Deficiency / chemically induced
Spironolactone / therapeutic use
Grant Support
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Diuretics; 2609-46-3/Amiloride; 52-01-7/Spironolactone

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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