Dysmagnesaemia and outcome in a trauma ICU

Jonathan Ilicki, Timothy Craig Hardcastle, Hans Barle, David James Jackson Muckart


Objective. To determine the prevalence of dysmagnesaemia among patients admitted to a trauma intensive care unit (ICU) and to investigate whether dysmagnesaemia at admission correlated with a worse outcome. 

Methods. In this retrospective case study of patients admitted to a regional level 1 trauma unit, from April 2007 to November 2010, de-identified patient data were obtained from the local patient database. Patients were divided into three groups (hypomagnesaemic, normomagnesaemic and hypermagnesaemic), which in turn were divided into two subgroups (blunt and penetrating trauma). The mortality between normo- and hypomagnesaemic patients, as well as between the subgroups, was analysed using χ2 tests. The University of KwaZulu-Natal Biomedical Research Ethics Committee approved the study (BE207/09). 

Results. Of the 759 trauma patients studied, 10.7% were hypomagnesaemic and 1.3% were hypermagnesaemic at admission. No statistically significant difference in mortality was observed between the hypo- and normo-/hypermagnesaemic patients. 

Conclusion. Dysmagnesaemia is common among trauma patients admitted to the ICU, but is not necessarily correlated with a poorer outcome.

Authors' affiliations

Jonathan Ilicki, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden

Timothy Craig Hardcastle, Inkosi Albert Luthuli Central Hospital Trauma Service, Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

Hans Barle, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden

David James Jackson Muckart, Inkosi Albert Luthuli Central Hospital Trauma Service, Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

Full Text



Magnesium; Hypermagnesemia; Hypomagnesemia; Prognosis; Mortality; Critical care

Cite this article

Southern African Journal of Critical Care 2014;30(2):45-50. DOI:10.7196/SAJCC.190

Article History

Date submitted: 2014-02-25
Date published: 2014-10-29

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