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Keywords

Hypokalemia, Hypophosphatemia, Malnutrition, Refeeding syndrome

 

Authors

  1. Adkins, Susan M. MSN, RN, CCRN

Abstract

Refeeding syndrome is an uncommon but potentially fatal phenomenon that can occur in patients receiving parenteral, enteral, or oral feedings after a period of sustained malnutrition or starvation. This syndrome is characterized by hypophosphatemia, hypokalemia, and hypomagnesemia. The purpose of this article was to bring an acute awareness of refeeding syndrome to the critical care nurse. The recognition, pathogenesis, clinical manifestations, potential life threatening complications, and treatment are presented.