HIGH POTASSIUM - Overview, Facts, Types, Symptoms - Watsons Health


Hyperkalemia is a condition when potassium levels are rising more than its normal levels. Potassium is an ion that plays a role in nerve and muscle cell functioning, as well as heart functioning.

The normal range is 3.6 to 5.2 millimoles per liter. When one acquires a potassium level of 6.0mmol/L in his or her body, it is dangerous so immediate treatment is needed.


It may not be always the one that leads to high levels of potassium. This may be due to the process that takes place shortly, causing the blood cells to rupture. It may leak from cells taken in a blood sample. Thus, it may cause a falsely elevated result, even if you have a normal potassium level in the body.

These are the problems that may cause the disease to occur:

  • Acute kidney failure
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Addison’s disease (adrenal insufficiency)
  • Angiotensin II receptor blockers
  • Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors
  • Beta-blockers
  • Dehydration
  • Destruction of red blood cells due to severe injury or burns
  • Excessive use of potassium supplements
  • Type 1 diabetes



A person may consult a doctor after particularly suffering from it’s symptoms, kidney diseases or from taking medications that raise your potassium level.

  • Muscle fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Paralysis
  • Abnormal heart rhythms (arrhythmias)
  • Nausea


When your doctor has ordered blood tests to examine your condition, that is the time when the disease is usually found.


It is more applicable to ask your doctor what your results mean. Your doctor can change what you take, including medications if they affect your potassium levels, or if you have other medical conditions to treat. Medical treatment or dialysis may be required in some instances.

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