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VOLUME 22 , ISSUE 9 ( 2018 ) > List of Articles


Severe Hypokalemia Mimicking Brain Death

Piyush Garg, Asif Hitawala, Abhay Jain, Ashish Nahar

Keywords : Brain death, flaccid paralysis, severe hypokalemia

Citation Information : Garg P, Hitawala A, Jain A, Nahar A. Severe Hypokalemia Mimicking Brain Death. Indian J Crit Care Med 2018; 22 (9):674-677.

DOI: 10.4103/ijccm.IJCCM_163_18

License: CC BY-ND 3.0

Published Online: 01-05-2015

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2018; The Author(s).


We discuss a case of a 20-year-old female who presented with history of fever, vomiting, and decreased oral intake for 10 days followed by one episode of generalized tonic—clonic seizure and altered sensorium for 5—6 h. On arrival in the emergency room, she had Glasgow Coma Scale 3 (E1V1M1), both pupils fixed and dilated, low blood pressure, low oxygen saturation, and few gasping breaths. She appeared to be brain dead and was assumed to have a very poor prognosis. Investigations revealed severe hypokalemia. She had also suffered acute hypoxic-ischemic injury to the brain. However, she recovered and was discharged about 2 weeks later.

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