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July 1938

VARIATIONS IN MAGNESIUM AND POTASSIUM ASSOCIATED WITH ESSENTIAL EPILEPSY

Author Affiliations

MINNEAPOLIS

From the Department of Pharmacology, the University of Minnesota Medical School.

Arch NeurPsych. 1938;40(1):66-78. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1938.02270070076006
Abstract

In 1934 we reported1 a series of clinical cases in which the plasma magnesium was low. Each of the patients had neuromuscular twitchings or convulsions. One was epileptic, and 2 other epileptic patients had values for the plasma magnesium at the lower limit of normal.

Though the chemical aspects of epilepsy have been thoroughly reviewed by Lennox and Cobb2 and Madsen3 and the biochemical relations of calcium, magnesium and phosphorus discussed by Schmidt and Greenberg,4 little is known about the possible variations of magnesium during epileptic convulsions.

Denis and Talbot5 reported low plasma magnesium in 2 epileptic children, and Blumgarten and Rohdenburg6 found low serum magnesium in 4 adults with epilepsy.

In view of these observations, particularly the demonstration by Meltzer and Auer,7 of the anticonvulsant action of magnesium salts, it seemed possible that lack of magnesium by failure to exert the normal

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