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Analysis of 13 patients with hypokalemic periodic paralysis

Author(s): Filiz KOÇ

Journal: Turkish Journal of Emergency Medicine
ISSN 1304-7361

Volume: 8;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 1;
Date: 2008;

Keywords: Clinical and laboratory findings | etiology | hypokalemia | periodic paralysis.

Objectives: Hypokalemic periodic paralysis is characterized by intermittent episodes of muscle weakness or paralysis. The attacks may occur everyday or once a year and may last for a few hours to several days. The serum potassium level is low during the attack. However, the serum potassium levels are normal between two attacks. In this study, we aimed to point out the clinical and etiological features of hypokalemic periodic paralysis. Materials and Methods: In this retrospective study, 13 patients with hypokalemic periodic paralysis were evaluated according to the etiologies, clinical and laboratory findings in the light of the literature. Results: In this study; thirteen patients (11 males, 2 females; mean age 31.1±11.2 years) were evaluated. The most common etiological cause was thyrotoxic hypokalemic periodic paralysis. The other causes were familial factors, distal renal tubular acidosis, and gastroenteritis respectively. Thyrotoxicosis was diagnosed in 2 cases during the first hypokalemic attack. Six cases had already hyperthyroidism diagnosis and had been taken therapy for hyperthyroidism. Conclusion: Hypokalemic periodic paralysis occurs depending on primary and secondary etiologies. In our study, the most common secondary cause was thyrotoxicosis.
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