How can hypokalaemia lead to increased pacemaker rate?

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How can hypokalaemia lead to increased pacemaker rate?

Post by jning » Tue Sep 23, 2008 7:07 am

If there is deficiency in K+ outside the cell, aint the K+ in the cells going to rush out rapidly during repolarisation, causing the a even more negative membrane potential?and woluldnt this be causing a longer time for the cell to reach the threshold for the next action potential and hence leading to a slower heart beat?need enlightenment here.thx

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Post by mith » Tue Sep 23, 2008 8:41 pm

the potential is a difference between the environments. I think any general increase and decrease of K+ levels simply shifts the concentration up or down, it doesn't really change the difference between the cell/environment unless you have a significant deficiency.
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