ACLS Medications Review: Magnesium

Reviewing the primary uses, dosage, and anything else you need to know about the administration of magnesium sulfate to treat cardiac arrest.

ACLS Medications Review: Magnesium.jpg

Overview of Magnesium:

Magnesium sulfate is an ACLS drug that can be found in the Adult Cardiac Arrest Algorithm. Magnesium is a second-line antiarrhythmic drug that is used when torsades de pointes (polymorphic VT) are present. You should also consider administering magnesium when you suspect the patient is experiencing hypomagnesemia or a magnesium deficiency.

Signs of hypomagnesemia are often seen in patients who are alcoholics or have other issues with malnutrition.

Lastly, magnesium is also recommended to treat life-threatening ventricular arrhythmias due to digitalis toxicity.

Magnesium Dosage:

  • When using magnesium sulfate for torsades de pointes, use a loading dose of 1-2 g IV/IO diluted in 10 mL D 5W, given over 5-20 minutes.
  • Follow with an infusion dose of 0.5-1 g/hour.

Additional Notes on Magnesium Usage:

  • Rapid administration may lead to a drop in blood pressure
  • Use with caution for patients with renal failure
  • Very high doses can cause respiratory distress. Calcium is an antidote to reverse
  • Routine administration in hospitalized patients with Acute Myocardial Infarction (AMI) is not recommended

For a brief review of all the ACLS medications you should be familiar with, check out the article below. It acts as a great visual reference that will help you study more efficiently and effectively.

Related Article: ACLS Drugs Video Review

Additional ACLS Medications:


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