Background: Rapid intradialytic potassium shifts during haemodialysis have been associated with increased mortality and morbidity. Standardising dialysate potassium to 2 mmol/l may decrease the potassium shift.
Objective: To examine the effect of standardising dialysate potassium to 2 mmol/l for all chronic dialysis treatments.
Design: Pre- and post-intervention comparison of monthly serum potassium. Participants: Ninety-seven individuals, of whom 56 patients could be matched across both data collection periods.
Methods: Serum potassium data were categorised based on a target range 3.5–6.0 mmol/l. Overall pre- and postintervention mean scores were compared using a paired samples t-test. Data for patients routinely prescribed dialysate potassium 1 mmol/l pre-intervention (n ¼ 6) underwent paired samples t-test to compare their mean serum potassium pre and post-intervention.
Results: There was no statistically significant change in serum potassium post- intervention. The majority of patients remained within the target range, including the subset of patients who had a history of high serum potassium during the pre- intervention period.
Conclusions: A standard potassium dialysate of 2 mmol/l may reduce intradialytic serum potassium shifts and may assist in standardising safer work practices.
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