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Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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How can staph infection in the spine be treated?

my wife is being treated for staph infection in her spine. part of the treatment is cefazolin injections 3 times daily which also includes a heparin injection at the end of each treatment. we had a call from the home health pharmacy that her last blood tests showed a elevated level of potassium (message several hours ago) the person calling was asking if she had problems urinating or felt dehydrated, both are no, but this person seemed concerned to the point that if she was having problems we should go to the ER . Now it is after hours for me to talk to her or our primary or infectious diseas Drs. With no symptoms do we have an immideate concern. I understand that the antibotic and heperan both will elevate the potassium levels. Any professional advice?
Mon, 16 Jul 2018
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Neurologist 's  Response
Hello and Welcome to ‘Ask A Doctor’ service. I have reviewed your query and here is my advice.

There is nothing that needs to be done emergently. However, it would be a good idea to verify this information with your primary doctor and also for your own edification to know exactly what those potassium numbers are since slight elevations are generally meaningless and can be as easily attributable to laboratory error of equipment. Or they could indicate something in the way of need to make adjustments to medications or levels of hydration, etc. If you'd like to upload a copy of your wife's laboratory results I'd be happy to look at them and give you a preliminary opinion on the status of that particular lab.

Hope I have answered your query. Let me know if I can assist you further.
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