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Clin Transplant. 2002 Oct;16(5):325-8.

Magnesium depletion in chronic terminal liver cirrhosis.

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Department of Anaesthesia and Intensive Care, Helsinki University Hospital, Helsinki, Finland.


Serum ionized magnesium represents less than 1% of the total body magnesium. The most reliable method to evaluate magnesium status is the magnesium loading test: In magnesium depletion its uptake is increased (20-50%) and is about 6% in normal magnesium status. There are no studies on magnesium status in chronic cirrhotics who may be in depletion. We performed magnesium loading test in 10 chronic cirrhotics listed for liver transplantation and in six healthy control patients. Magnesium sulphate 30 mmol was infused and urine magnesium was determined over 24 h. Serum ionized magnesium increased similarly in all patients. The uptake of magnesium was 8 +/- 8% in control patients and 34 +/- 26% in cirrhotics (p < 0.01). Chronic terminal cirrhotics are magnesium depleted which should be taken into account in case of liver transplantation and also in other interventions. Spot sampled serum ionized magnesium revealed magnesium depletion poorly.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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