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The serum potassium test helps to know the level of potassium in the blood. Serum potassium is a blood test commonly performed as a part of an electrolyte panel. This might be a component of a routine checkup as well. Serum potassium levels give an assessment of kidney function. Potassium levels affect the heart, muscles and nerve function. Levels that are abnormally low or high can both be detrimental. A regular serum potassium level test may be advised if you have diabetes or hypertension or if you are on certain medications that affect potassium levels. Regulation of potassium levels has been linked to numerous health benefits like improved cardiovascular health and preventing strokes. This can be achieved by consuming a potassium-rich diet. Low potassium levels may cause weakness, muscle cramps or constipation. In severe cases, it can cause arrhythmia. This is an irregular heart rhythm. These can potentially be fatal and require urgent intervention. In case of any such symptoms with low potassium levels, visit your doctor immediately. Do not attempt any home remedies without consulting an expert. High potassium levels can cause arrhythmias and muscle weakness as well. They can also cause severe pain in the abdomen, diarrhoea, and nausea. Mild cases may have no symptoms at all. Severe cases may require frequent testing and additional testing, including an electrocardiogram.
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