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Pacing Clin Electrophysiol. 2012 Sep;35(9):e276-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1540-8159.2012.03471.x. Epub 2012 Jul 21.

Acute hyperkalemia detected by alert from implantable cardioverter-defibrillator.

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  • 1Cardiovascular Division, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.


Two cases of implantable cardioverter-defibrillator lead impedance changes that corresponded with changes in serum potassium are described. In the first case, an audible lead alert was triggered due to a significant change in lead impedance caused by hyperkalemia. In the second case, a patient was admitted with hyperkalemia and renal failure. Device interrogation revealed a change in lead impedance corresponding to changes in serum potassium. As devices and leads become more sophisticated, their role for monitoring parameters and triggering alerts may expand to include electrolyte and other metabolic changes.

©2012, The Authors. Journal compilation ©2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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