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Nebulised salbutamol, widely used as rescue asthma therapy, is associated with hypokalaemia. In children, only a few case reports and clinical trials showed an incidence of hypokalaemia ([K+] of <3.5 mmol/L) ranging from 36.9% to 82.3%. [K+] of <3.0 mmol/L is reported in 0%–17.6%.1–3 The objective of this study was to determine the incidence of hypokalaemia in children with asthma frequently nebulised with salbutamol; and to identify subgroups who are more prone to develop hypokalaemia.
In our retrospective observational study, we included children diagnosed and treated for acute asthma with nebulised salbutamol according to our national paediatric guideline4 and [K+] measurement during admission (n=279). Clinical and physical data, supplementation …