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November 4, 1974

Dosage of Potassium Chloride Elixir to Correct Thiazide-lnduced Hypokalemia

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, Hahnemann Medical College and Hospital, Philadelphia.

JAMA. 1974;230(5):702-704. doi:10.1001/jama.1974.03240050030020

The oral dose of 10% potassium chloride elixir required to reverse thiazide-induced hypokalemia was determined in 15 patients with essential hypertension. Each patient had maintained a serum K concentration of at least 0.5 mEq/liter less than duplicate control values (mean decreases, 0.62 mEq/liter) for at least two months during therapy with hydrochlorothiazide, 50 mg twice daily. Potassium chloride 10% elixir was administered in a total daily dose of 40 mEq, with bimonthly increments to 60 mEq, 80 mEq, and 100 mEq, while the thiazide administration was maintained.

The serum K deficit was repleted to 75% in 12 of the 15 patients. In eight of the 12, this was accomplished with 40 mEq potassium chloride daily, and in four, with 60 mEq daily. The latter dose is recommended in patients with thiazide-induced hypokalemia.

(JAMA 230:702-704, 1974)