Muscle Weakness

Muscle weakness in the transplant recipient may have several causes including 1) Electrolyte abnormalities (hypophosphatemia, hypomagnesemia, hypocalcemia, severe hypo- or hyperkalemia), 2) glucocorticoids therapy, 3) persistent hyperparathyroidism, 4) Other medications (cyclosporine or tacrolimus in combination with an HMG - CoA reductase inhibitor, HMG - CoA reductase inhibitor in combination with a fibrinic acid derivatives (gemfibrizol, fenofibrate, clofibrate) or niacin, or colchicine in patients with impaired renal function), 5) hypo- or hyperthyroidism, 6) infections with CMV. Diagnosis is made by discontinuing medications that may cause weakness or at least reducing the dose, blood tests to look for electrolyte abnormalities, check the PTH level, and check thyroid functions as well as specific biochemical abnormality, creatinine kinase enzymes (CPK), and aldolase level. An electromyogram and muscle biopsy may be required.

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