Episodic Paralysis? low potassium may be an issue

Zebra

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Hi, PheonixRisers!

I was recently given IV potassium to "correct" a non-specific EKG abnormality (ST wave depression).

This experience got me curious about the power of electrolytes, specifically electrolytes out of balance, so I started doing some reading.

As I went further down the Internet rabbit hole, I came across episodic paralysis due to low potassium, which is called hypokalemic periodic paralysis.

I am sharing this with the group because I have encountered at least two forum members who experience episodic paralysis, and I'm hoping they will see this post, and maybe, just maybe, it could be of help to them.

I will cut & paste the diagnostic criteria for
hypokalemic periodic paralysis here and then post a link to the Genetic and Rare Diseases page that contains all the details.

A clinical diagnosis of HOKPP is based on:
  • a history of episodes of paralysis
  • low levels of potassium during attacks, but not between attacks
  • the identification of typical "triggers" (i.e., rest after exercise, prolonged immobility)
  • a family history consistent with autosomal dominant inheritance. The diagnosis cannot be established by clinical findings alone in the absence of a known family history of the condition.**
**NOTE: Inheritance from a parent may sometimes be "masked" by a parent not having symptoms.

https://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/diseases/6729/hypokalemic-periodic-paralysis#panelContentOverview
 
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When I was researching my paralysis I came across this. Did not solve my issue. I think mine is an issue with cord compression and the other type due to sleep issues (I have 2 types). Is more like autonomic issue for me. But again we are all guessing at this point.
 

Zebra

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The hard part is there is also a syndrome known as HYPERkalemic paralysis syndrome abbreviated HYPP. So if someone is experiencing this symptom it could mean low or high potassium levels.

Anyway, just thought I'd point that confusing aspect of this out.
Hi, @Judee

Thank you for contributing to this thread!

I did not know of this condition, so I looked it up. The list of documented symptoms for HYPERkalemic period paralysis is pretty long, and some folks on this forum might benefit from taking a look.

I am posting a link to the Genetic and Rare Diseases website for HYPP for anyone who wants to review.

https://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/d...riodic paralysis is a,eyes, throat, and trunk.

I have had persistently low sodium (hyponatremia) and now low potassium (hypokalemia), so I have much to learn and ask my doctors about, but that's for another time and place.

Thanks again for sharing your knowledge with the group!