Magnesium deficiency

Endocrinology, Metabolism and Nutrition

Clinicals - History

Fact Explanation
Generalized muscle pain Majority of magnesium is contained in the bones, muscles and soft tissues. Extracellular fluid only 1% of the total body magnesium. Magnesium involves in the muscle functions, oxygen uptake, energy production, and electrolyte
balance. Deficiency causes severe progressive skeletal muscle pain. Neuromuscular excitability can be due to increased intracellular calcium as magnesium deficiency impairs the calcium pump and sodium/calcium exchange across the cell membrane. Most frequently calf muscles are involved. Then hamstring, quadriceps, abdominal recti, pectoral and upper limbs are involved in a decreasing frequency.
Generalized muscle pain
Majority of magnesium is contained in the bones, muscles and soft tissues. Extracellular fluid only 1% of the total body magnesium. Magnesium involves in the muscle functions, oxygen uptake, energy production, and electrolyte
balance. Deficiency causes severe progressive skeletal muscle pain. Neuromuscular excitability can be due to increased intracellular calcium as magnesium deficiency impairs the calcium pump and sodium/calcium exchange across the cell membrane. Most frequently calf muscles are involved. Then hamstring, quadriceps, abdominal recti, pectoral and upper limbs are involved in a decreasing frequency.
Restless leg syndrome Severe muscle pain is a feature of magnesium deficiency. In this condition there is a feeling of discomfort when sitting or lying down. They also have crawling, tingling, itching, tugging and pain in the calves, thighs and feet. Restless leg syndrome
Severe muscle pain is a feature of magnesium deficiency. In this condition there is a feeling of discomfort when sitting or lying down. They also have crawling, tingling, itching, tugging and pain in the calves, thighs and feet.
Severe abdominal cramps With severe deficiency the spasms may become intense and frequent. This may be confused with the surgical pathologies. Severe abdominal cramps
With severe deficiency the spasms may become intense and frequent. This may be confused with the surgical pathologies.
Palpitations Magnesium is needed for contraction and relaxation of muscles. Deficiency of the Mg can result in arrhythmias. Palpitations
Magnesium is needed for contraction and relaxation of muscles. Deficiency of the Mg can result in arrhythmias.
History of physical training Though there is a redistribution of magnesium immediately after exercise, long term physical training reduces the magnesium levels and causes deficiency state. History of physical training
Though there is a redistribution of magnesium immediately after exercise, long term physical training reduces the magnesium levels and causes deficiency state.
Shortness of breath Due to congestive heart failure associated with weak contractile function of cardiac tissue. Shortness of breath
Due to congestive heart failure associated with weak contractile function of cardiac tissue.
Ansomnia, fatigue and lethrgy Magnesium is involved in the production and transportation of energy within the body. Ansomnia, fatigue and lethrgy
Magnesium is involved in the production and transportation of energy within the body.
Depression, confusion Neuropsychiatric manifestations of hypomagnesemia. Depression, confusion
Neuropsychiatric manifestations of hypomagnesemia.
Risk factors: malnutrition One third of the magnesium in the diet is absorbed. Malnutrition is associated with deficiency of magnesium. When there is provision of magnesium <0.4mmol/day, it is a magnesium deficient diet. Risk factors: malnutrition
One third of the magnesium in the diet is absorbed. Malnutrition is associated with deficiency of magnesium. When there is provision of magnesium <0.4mmol/day, it is a magnesium deficient diet.
Risk factors: Inflammatory bowel disease, severe cholestatic liver disease and pancreatic disease Reduced absorption. Risk factors: Inflammatory bowel disease, severe cholestatic liver disease and pancreatic disease
Reduced absorption.
Diuretic therapy and renal diseases Remaining amount of magnesium, after absorption to the body is magnesium is excreted by the kidney. Diuretic therapy and renal diseases
Remaining amount of magnesium, after absorption to the body is magnesium is excreted by the kidney.
Prolonged diarrhoea Increased loss of magnesium. Prolonged diarrhoea
Increased loss of magnesium.
Alcoholism Reduced intake, absorption and increased loss by diarrhoea and vomiting are the causes for magnesium deficiency. Alcoholism
Reduced intake, absorption and increased loss by diarrhoea and vomiting are the causes for magnesium deficiency.

Clinicals - Examination

Fact Explanation
Tachycardia Increased heart rate in arrhythmias. Tachycardia
Increased heart rate in arrhythmias.
Increased blood pressure Due eto increased vascular smooth muscle tone. Increased blood pressure
Due eto increased vascular smooth muscle tone.
Depressed mood Neuropsychiatric manifestations of hypomagnesemia. Depressed mood
Neuropsychiatric manifestations of hypomagnesemia.
Nystagmus Neuropsychiatric manifestations of hypomagnesemia. Nystagmus
Neuropsychiatric manifestations of hypomagnesemia.
Ataxia Neuropsychiatric manifestations of hypomagnesemia. Ataxia
Neuropsychiatric manifestations of hypomagnesemia.
Chovstek's sign Tapping on the face at a point just anterior
to the ear and just below the zygomatic bone produces twitching of the ipsilateral facial
muscles; this is a positive Chvostek's sign that is suggestive of neuromuscular excitability caused by hypocalcemia.
Chovstek's sign
Tapping on the face at a point just anterior
to the ear and just below the zygomatic bone produces twitching of the ipsilateral facial
muscles; this is a positive Chvostek's sign that is suggestive of neuromuscular excitability caused by hypocalcemia.
Trousseau's sign Elicited by inflating a sphygmomanometer cuff above systolic blood pressure for several minutes and observing muscular contraction including flexion of the wrist and metacarpophalangeal joints, hyperextension of the fingers, and flexion of the thumb. This is considered to be due to neuromuscular excitability caused by hypocalcemia. Trousseau's sign
Elicited by inflating a sphygmomanometer cuff above systolic blood pressure for several minutes and observing muscular contraction including flexion of the wrist and metacarpophalangeal joints, hyperextension of the fingers, and flexion of the thumb. This is considered to be due to neuromuscular excitability caused by hypocalcemia.
Muscle fasciculations Neuromuscular manifestation of hypomagnesemia. Muscle fasciculations
Neuromuscular manifestation of hypomagnesemia.

Investigations - Diagnosis

Fact Explanation
Serum magnesium concentration Is usually reduced. Reference range for Mg is 0.7-1.5mmol/L But a normal serum magnesium can be present even in the presence of deficiency as majority of body magnesium is in the bones and soft tissues. Serum magnesium concentration
Is usually reduced. Reference range for Mg is 0.7-1.5mmol/L But a normal serum magnesium can be present even in the presence of deficiency as majority of body magnesium is in the bones and soft tissues.
Urinary magnesium This is also reduced, in magnesium deficiency. Urinary magnesium
This is also reduced, in magnesium deficiency.

Investigations - Management

Fact Explanation
Serum electrolytes Due to the risk of electrolyte imbalance. Serum electrolytes
Due to the risk of electrolyte imbalance.
Electrocardiogram Due to the risk of arrhythmia. Electrocardiogram
Due to the risk of arrhythmia.
Full blood count As the patient complains of severe myalgia, it is important to exclude the other conditions that can present with myalgia. eg:- leptospirosis will have neutrophilia with reduced platelet counts, dengue will have neutropenia with reduced platelet count. Full blood count
As the patient complains of severe myalgia, it is important to exclude the other conditions that can present with myalgia. eg:- leptospirosis will have neutrophilia with reduced platelet counts, dengue will have neutropenia with reduced platelet count.
Electrocardiogram Digoxin mediated arrhythmias and malignant supraventricular and ventricular arrhythmias can occur. Prolongation of QT interval, ventricular fibrillation can be seen. Electrocardiogram
Digoxin mediated arrhythmias and malignant supraventricular and ventricular arrhythmias can occur. Prolongation of QT interval, ventricular fibrillation can be seen.
Serum electrolytes Magnesium affects the balance of the other ions such as sodium, potassium and calcium. It can causes hyperkalemia, hypocalcemia and hypophosphatemia. Serum electrolytes
Magnesium affects the balance of the other ions such as sodium, potassium and calcium. It can causes hyperkalemia, hypocalcemia and hypophosphatemia.

Management - Supportive

Fact Explanation
Supportive maangement Bed rest should be prescribed in the initial stages. Supportive maangement
Bed rest should be prescribed in the initial stages.
Improving dietary intake Recommended Nutrient
Intake (RNI) for magnesium should be around 220mg/day for a female and 260 mg/day for a male. Meat, seafood, dairy products, nuts and cereals are good sources of magnesium.
Improving dietary intake
Recommended Nutrient
Intake (RNI) for magnesium should be around 220mg/day for a female and 260 mg/day for a male. Meat, seafood, dairy products, nuts and cereals are good sources of magnesium.
Prevention of magnesium deficiency Spironolactone and amiloride diuretics have a magnesium sparing effect and therefore can be used as long term diuretics if needed. Addition of magnesium 6-15mmol/day in parenteral nutrition is also important. Prevention of magnesium deficiency
Spironolactone and amiloride diuretics have a magnesium sparing effect and therefore can be used as long term diuretics if needed. Addition of magnesium 6-15mmol/day in parenteral nutrition is also important.

Management - Specific

Fact Explanation
Muscle relaxation Orphenadrine and acetaminophen is used for the muscle relaxation. Muscle relaxation
Orphenadrine and acetaminophen is used for the muscle relaxation.
Magnesium oral suppliments Can be used to treat muscle pain and disabilities due to magnesium deficiency occurring with continuous magnesium loss. eg:- magnesium gluconate, magnesium glucoheptonate Magnesium oral suppliments
Can be used to treat muscle pain and disabilities due to magnesium deficiency occurring with continuous magnesium loss. eg:- magnesium gluconate, magnesium glucoheptonate
Magnesium sulphate infusion Magnesium intravenous infusion is given as 6-15g of 50% magnesium in 1000 microliters of normal saline according to the age and body weight of the patient This is used in emergency situations as acute myocardial infarctions. Magnesium sulphate infusion
Magnesium intravenous infusion is given as 6-15g of 50% magnesium in 1000 microliters of normal saline according to the age and body weight of the patient This is used in emergency situations as acute myocardial infarctions.
Management of complications Complications to be anticipated are arrhythmias, hypertension, seizures and electrolyte imbalances etc. They need specific management. Management of complications
Complications to be anticipated are arrhythmias, hypertension, seizures and electrolyte imbalances etc. They need specific management.

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