Plasma electrolytes in healthy individuals and elective surgical patients in Khartoum

  • AA Abdalla
  • EE Abdalla


Objectives: This study aimed to investigate if the frequently observed low preoperative values of the plasma electrolytes Na+, K+, and Ca+2 in our surgical patients, in Khartoum, is a reflection of their levels in the population at large or it is a genuine finding in patients.

Methods: 90 male and female subjects were included in this study. 60 healthy, young and elderly individuals were selected randomly from amongst medical students and employees of the University of Khartoum. 30 elective orthopedic and general surgical patients were randomly selected from Khartoum teaching hospital. Plasma Na+ and K+ were measured using a digital flammometer, and plasma Ca+2was measured using a spectrophotometer. Results were compared to international data using the Z test. Comparison between the groups in the study was done using the student t-test.

Results: Plasma Na+, K+, and Ca+2of the healthy subjects and the surgical patients were found to be low compared to the international reference values. Plasma K+ is higher and Ca+2is lower in the older subjects when compared to young ones.

Conclusion: a larger study is needed to set the normal values for plasma electrolytes in the Sudan. The high environmental temperature and nature of our diets could be the reason for the observed differences between our subjects and international reference values


Keywords: plasma Na+, K+, Ca+2, digital flammometer


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1858-5051