In General, potassium is a very essential mineral to the human body for maintaining to build proteins and muscle, break down carbohydrates, maintain normal body growth and normal heart electricity, etc.
The Normal serum potassium is 3.5 to 5.5 mEq/L. The total body potassium is lower in females and in older patients, serum potassium concentration is independent of sex and age.
Diabetic Nephropathy is a progressive kidney disease caused by disease of the blood vessels in the kidney glomeruli in diabetics.
Angiotensin, a peptide hormone with function to cause vasoconstriction and a subsequent increase in blood pressure. Its inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers such as lisinopril (80 mg) were randomized to spironolactone (25 mg daily), losartan (100 mg daily) prescibed in conventional medicine for treating diabetic nephropathy may be distribute more safe depending to the levels of serum potassium after intake of the medicine. In a blinded, randomized, three-arm placebo-controlled clinical trial, 80 participants with diabetic nephropathy taking lisinopril (80 mg) were randomized to spironolactone (25 mg daily), losartan (100 mg daily), or placebo (trial dates from July of 2003 to December of 2006), researcher suggested that a better understanding of extrarenal potassium homeostasis will provide an opportunity to use this drug more safely in patients with diabetic nephropathy as well as other patient populations.
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(1) Potassium Handling with Dual Renin-Angiotensin System Inhibition in Diabetic Nephropathy by Van Buren PN, Adams-Huet B, Nguyen M, Molina C, Toto RD.(PubMed)