Hyponatremia treatments may include changing a medication that affects your sodium level, treating the underlying disease, changing the amount of water you drink or changing the amount of salt in your diet.
Hyponatremia in elderly subjects is mainly caused by drugs (more frequently thiazides and antidepressants), the syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone secretion (SIAD) or endocrinopathies; however, hyponatremia is multifactorial in a significant proportion of patients.
Treatment for low blood sodium cutting back on fluid intake. adjusting the dosage of diuretics. taking medications for symptoms such as headaches, nausea, and seizures. treating underlying conditions. infusing an intravenous (IV) sodium solution.
Those who have mild to moderate hyponatremia resulting from lifestyle factors or medication may be able to increase sodium to normal levels by: drinking less fluids (often less than 1 quart per day) adjusting medication dose or switching medications.
In elderly patients with a diet poor in protein and sodium , hyponatremia may be worsened by their low solute intake. The kidney’s need to excrete solutes aids in water excretion. An increase in dietary protein and salt can help improve water excretion.
Confusion, disorientation and drowsiness–common symptoms of low sodium –may masquerade as the symptoms of other neurological conditions in the elderly, such as vascular dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.
Who is most at risk for hyponatremia? Anyone can develop hyponatremia. Hyponatremia is more likely in people living with certain diseases, like kidney failure, congestive heart failure , and diseases affecting the lungs, liver or brain . It often occurs with pain after surgery.
A low sodium level has many causes , including consumption of too many fluids, kidney failure, heart failure, cirrhosis, and use of diuretics. Symptoms result from brain dysfunction.
In many hospital laboratories 160 mEq/L is chosen as the upper critical value. The evidence of this study suggests that sodium in the range of 155-160 mEq/L is associated with high risk of death and that 155 mEq/L rather than 160 mEq/L might be more suitable as the upper critical level .
High- Sodium Foods Smoked, cured, salted or canned meat, fish or poultry including bacon, cold cuts, ham, frankfurters, sausage, sardines, caviar and anchovies. Frozen breaded meats and dinners, such as burritos and pizza. Canned entrees, such as ravioli, spam and chili. Salted nuts. Beans canned with salt added.
Although sodium may take longer to normalise within the brain and hence the neuropsychiatric symptoms take longer to resolve but serum levels should be corrected as advised earlier no faster than 10-12 mEq/L in 24 hrs . Levels lower than 105 mEq/L are prone to develop osmotic demyelination if corrected too rapidly.
In patients with severe symptomatic hyponatremia , the rate of sodium correction should be 6 to 12 mEq per L in the first 24 hours and 18 mEq per L or less in 48 hours.
How is the sodium blood test done? This test is performed on a blood sample, obtained by venipuncture. A technician will insert a small needle into a vein on your arm or hand. This will be used to fill a test tube with blood.
Chronic caffeine intake increases urinary sodium excretion without affecting plasma sodium concentration .
Symptoms of a low sodium level include nausea, vomiting, headache, confusion, feeling weak or tired, restlessness, muscle weakness, spasms or cramps and seizures or passing out. Most Americans eat much more sodium than their bodies require. Too much sodium can worsen high blood pressure and heart failure.