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Nurse Mandy
Nurse Mandy, Nurse
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 498
Experience:  LPN since 2000. Experience in Orthopedics, Dermatology, Cardiology & Ear Nose and Throat
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Yesterday I end up in the ER due to severe abdmonial pain for

Customer Question

Yesterday I end up in the ER due to severe abdmonial pain for 24 hr that got worse in the afternoon. They end up finding out my K was 2.5 however they just gave me 10meq of K IV replacement and didnt wait 2 hrs to draw the blood. They drawn the blood right after the second bag was over and from the same IV site that the Potassium was running. Of course the results came back at 4.2. Regarding the abdominal pain they did a CT which came back normal and end up sending me home. They completelly disregard my symptoms of cramping legs, skip heart beat severe fatigue and sweating. Today since i woke up i have this terrible headache that doesnt go away. I took 6 tylenol and the headache is still there. Do you think it could be side effects of the IV potassium or the dilaudid they gave me for pain?? Or my K is still low???
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Nurse Mandy replied 5 years ago.


My name is Mandy. Thank you for using Just Answer. I am happy to help you with your concern.


I do not believe the headache is from the potassium or diluadid that you received. The most common side effects of potassium are diarrhea, gas, nausea & vomiting. The most common side effects of diilaudid are dry mouth, light headed, dizziness, constipation, sweating and nausea.


All of your symptoms do sound like low potassium, so I am in agreement that giving you potassium IV was the correct call. Symptoms of having low potassium include muscle cramps, weakness, tiredness, nausea & vomiting, abdominal cramping, irregular heart beat/palpations, thirsty, increased urination, passing out and fainting. If your symptoms from this are feeling better then the potassium level that they drew probably is correct. If however you are still having these symptoms then I would see your family doctor on Monday and they can draw another level to see if your potassium is still low. If it is they will either have another IV given or write you a prescription for potassium or have you increase potassium in your diet. Foods that contain a high amount of potassium are bananas, cantaloupe, watermelon, raisins, strawberries, beets, citrus, green beans, mushrooms, spinach, peas, turkey, fish, beef, salmon, prunes and dates.


I believe the headache is probably just a headache and not related to the potassium or the medications you received. Things you can do to treat the headache are rest in a quite dark room, alternate between Tylenol and ibuprofen, cool compresses to your head and neck and drinking caffeine. It may be that you have developed a migraine and these can last for up to 72 hours. If your headache does not go away or gets worse then you should see a doctor. Sometimes an injection of a pain medication is needed to treat the headache.


I hope this has helped. Feel better soon!

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