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Defibrillator set off by low potassium
My brother has had a pacemaker/debrillator for years.  In the last 2 years we have nearly lost him 9 times due to low potassium.  The diagnosis has been "low potassium" as the cause for his heart stopping which requires the defbrillator to shock him and bring him back.  He has been rushed to the ER and had lengthy hospital stays each time.  He is WORN OUT.

Is there any kind of home test to check potassium levels for heart patients?  Or a home test for electrolytes?  Anyone know of any type of home test that would indicate when there is a problem with the level of potassium.  My brother needs the ability to check this himself.

Thanks!
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444864 tn?1205159493
I received my pacemaker/defibulator 2 years ago and have been shocked only once. Ideally your potassium levels should be around 3.6 - 4...in hospital after the shock, I caught a flu bug and lost alot of my potassium through diarrhea and vomitting. My potassium levels went down to 2.3.  I take potassium pills that have been perscribed my my cardiologist, three times a day. I don't know of any method of checking out your electrolytes at home. I get my blood done every 2wks.  Is your brother on potassium supplements??
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444864 tn?1205159493
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There should be a reason his potassium is low. Does he have an eating disorder, or take meds like a diuretic that would deplete him of potassium? He needs a workup to figure it out, and it sounds like he needs to be on a supplement like the previous person stated. If his doctor doesn't look into this, I would find a new doctor. It is not normal to have a low potassium for no reason. Good luck to your brother. Debi
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