Hypomagnesemia is a condition where the body has abnormally low levels of magnesium.
Although magnesium is important for the body to work more efficiently having low levels of this nutrient may often generate mild symptoms.
In severe cases, if magnesium levels are extremely low, it can create more problems if not treated.
In this blog post, we will discuss on what you need to know about hypomagnesemia.
What is Hypomagnesemia and What Causes it?
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Hypomagnesemia is a medical condition that occurs when there’s low levels of magnesium in the blood.
Your body needs magnesium to do lots of things like controlling nerves and muscles, regulating blood sugar, and keeping blood pressure in check.
Magnesium is a super nutrient that helps your body stay healthy and function properly.
But there are certain factors that causes the level of magnesium in your blood to fall below the normal range, some of the causes include:
- Inadequate dietary intake of foods rich in magnesium.
- Crohn’s disease interfering with the body’s ability to absorb magnesium from food.
- Medications like diuretics interfering with the body’s ability to absorb magnesium.
- Chronic alcoholism reducing the levels of magnesium in the blood.
- Kidney disease that impairs magnesium excretion resulting in a buildup of magnesium in the blood.
- Hyperthyroidism disrupting magnesium metabolism.
- Pancreatitis causes magnesium deficiency due to malabsorption and increased urinary excretion.
- Chemotherapy drugs increasing the excretion of magnesium.
What are the Symptoms of Hypomagnesemia?
The symptoms of this condition can be different depending on how bad the lack of magnesium is and what caused it in the first place.
Some of the symptoms include:
- Muscle weakness
- Irregular heartbeat
- High blood pressure
- Loss of appetite
All these symptoms may indicate magnesium deficiency but further diagnosis should be done to confirm whether it is hypomagnesemia.
Diagnosis of Hypomagnesemia
A simple blood test known as serum magnesium test is used to diagnose this condition.
It is important to note that low levels of magnesium may not always show up in blood tests, especially if the deficiency is mild.
In this case, an electrocardiogram is needed to confirm this diagnosis.
The normal range for magnesium in the blood is between 1.7 to 2.3 mg/dL.
If the magnesium level falls below the lower limit of the reference range, it may indicate that you have hypomagnesemia.
Treatment of Hypomagnesemia
The treatment of this condition involves increasing magnesium levels in the body.
Here are some of the options for treating hypomagnesemia:
- Taking magnesium supplement
- Intravenous (IV) magnesium therapy
- Managing diabetes
Prevention of Hypomagnesemia
If you eat a healthy diet and make good lifestyle choices, you can prevent hypomagnesemia.
Here are some ways to prevent hypomagnesemia:
- Eating a diet rich in magnesium
- Limiting alcohol consumption
- Taking magnesium supplements
- Engaging in regular exercise
- Managing stress and getting enough sleep
Complications of Hypomagnesemia
If this condition becomes more complicated, it can create serious problems like arrhythmias, seizures, and preeclampsia.
Conclusion: What You Need to Know About Hypomagnesemia
If you don’t get immediate treatment for hypomagnesemia, you can have different symptoms and problems.
It’s important to know the things that can make you more likely to have hypomagnesemia, like drinking too much alcohol, having diabetes, and taking certain medications.
By making healthy choices in what you eat and how you live, you can prevent hypomagnesemia before it starts, and ensure that you keep good levels of magnesium in your body.
Remember to eat a balanced diet rich in magnesium, stay hydrated, and limit your intake of alcohol and caffeine.