Podcast # 417: Water Balance - The Emergency Medical Minute

Podcast # 417: Water Balance

Author: Katie Sprinkle, MD

Educational Pearls:

  • Hyponatremia results when patients over hydrate and dilute their sodium with too much free water
  • Symptoms of hyponatremia can mimic symptoms of dehydration (dizziness,  lightheadedness, general malaise)
  • With severe hyponatremia patients can progress to seizure, coma, and death
  • Hypernatremia results from dehydration and is more common


Bennett BL, Hew-Butler T, Hoffman MD, Rogers IR, Rosner MH; Wilderness Medical Society.. Wilderness Medical Society practice guidelines for treatment of exercise-associated hyponatremia: 2014 update. Wilderness Environ Med. 2014 Dec;25(4 Suppl):S30-42. doi: 10.1016/j.wem.2014.08.009. PubMed PMID: 25498260.

Braun MM, Barstow CH, Pyzocha NJ. Diagnosis and management of sodium disorders: hyponatremia and hypernatremia. Am Fam Physician. 2015 Mar 1;91(5):299-307. PubMed PMID: 25822386.

Summarized by Travis Barlock, MS4 | Edited by Erik Verzemnieks, MD

Check out this episode!

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