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N Engl J Med. 1980 Sep 18;303(12):657-61.

Hypocitraturia in patients with gastrointestinal malabsorption.


We measured serum and urinary citrate, oxalate, calcium, and magnesium in 22 normal subjects and in 16 patients with malabsorption. The patients had subnormal levels of serum citrate and magnesium during fasting, subnormal 24-hour levels of urinary citrate, magnesium, and calcium, and excessive levels of urinary oxalate. Daily citrate excretion averaged only 15 per cent of normal. The hypocitraturia in the patients resulted from a subnormal filtered load of citrate and abnormally high net tubular reabsorption of the anion. An oral citrate supplement raised both the serum concentration and the filtered load of citrate to normal fasting values, but net tubular reabsorption remained abnormally high and urinary excretion abnormally low. Intramuscular magnesium sulfate, which corrected the hypomagnesemia and hypomagnesuria, had no effect on serum citrate or its filtered load. Nevertheless the injection restored net tubular reabsorption of citrate to normal and partially improved the hypocitraturia. Full correction of the hypocitraturia was achieved by combined treatment with oral citrate and intramuscular magnesium sulfate. Hypocitraturia may contribute to the formation of oxalate stones in these patients, and therefore our treatment may help to prevent this complication.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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