South Med J. 2020 Mar;113(3):125-129. doi: 10.14423/SMJ.0000000000001075.
OBJECTIVES: There is limited evidence for the use of salt tablets in the treatment of hyponatremia. This retrospective study evaluated the effectiveness of salt tablet administration in euvolemic hyponatremia.
METHODS: This was a single-center, retrospective cohort study. Information on patients' demographics, clinical characteristics, and laboratory data were collected for retrospective review. Treatment for hyponatremia, including the amount of salt tablets, fluid restriction, and diuretics was collected. We compared hyponatremic patients with those who received salt tablets versus those who did not receive salt tablets. The primary outcome of interest was the change in serum sodium at 48 hours between the two groups.
RESULTS: A total of 1258 medical records were initially screened with inclusion and exclusion criteria. After screening, there were 83 patients included in the study. Forty-two patients received salt tablets and 41 patients were in the group that did not receive salt tablets. Patients treated with salt tablets were older, more often female, and had lower body weight and lower initial serum sodium. The change in serum sodium after 48 hours was higher in the salt tablet group (5.2 mEq/L) than the non-salt tablet group (3.1 mEq/L; P < 0.001). This difference in serum sodium between the two groups remained statistically significant when adjusted for age, sex, weight, and initial serum sodium.
CONCLUSIONS: The use of salt tablets in the treatment of euvolemic hyponatremia is associated with a small but significant improvement in serum sodium compared with patients who did not receive such therapy, even after adjusting for age, sex, weight, and initial serum sodium. This study supports the effectiveness of salt tablets in the treatment of euvolemic hyponatremia in medical patients.