Lightning Learning: Hyperkalaemia & ECG

Lightning Learning: Hyperkalaemia & ECG

“Our New Year special is covering Hyperkalaemia and potential ECG changes.”
— advice is based on local guidelines & procedures

What?

Hyper K+ = >5.5mmol/l

>5.5: Repolarisation abnormalities - the classical “Tented T-Wave”

>6.5: paralysis of the atria - flattened p-waves & prolonged PR Segment

>7.0: conduction abnormalities & bradycardia the ECG can be bizarre including…

  • AV blocks

  • Junctional Rhythms

  • Bundle Branch or Fascicular Blocks

  • Sinus Brady or Slow AF

Sine Waves are pre-terminal!

Why?

Hyperkalaemia is one of the 8 reversible causes of cardiac arrest, however we should identify and treat our patients before this happens.

All patients with hyperkalaemia need an ECG and if it is abnormal treatment should be started immediately, give calcium gluconate.

Remember to also think hyperkalaemia in any bradycardic patient.

Further Reading

Sim Blog: Modified Valsalva Manoeuvre (SVT)

Sim Blog: Modified Valsalva Manoeuvre (SVT)

Sim Blog: Methadone Ingestion

Sim Blog: Methadone Ingestion