Drugs & Aging

, Volume 2, Issue 1, pp 35–41 | Cite as

Drug-Induced Hypokalaemia

A Cause for Concern
  • Gerald Isaac
  • O. Bryan Holland
Review Article Adverse Effects


Drug-induced hypokalaemia is a widespread problem in the elderly that can be caused by many therapeutically useful substances, the most common of which are diuretics. In certain classes of patients (e.g. those with acute myocardial infarction, with congestive heart failure receiving digitalis, or with cirrhosis), iatrogenic hypokalaemia is an established risk factor. In patients with hypertension who have no underlying heart disease or liver disease, the use of diuretics may lead to worsened glucose tolerance and cardiac arrythmias. There is also evidence for an increased risk of sudden cardiac death.


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Copyright information

© Adis International Limited 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gerald Isaac
    • 1
  • O. Bryan Holland
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Internal MedicineUniversity of Texas Medical BranchGalvestonUSA

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