High potassium or hyperkalemia develops when the body produces more of this essential electrolyte than it needs to function correctly or if the body does not sufficiently process the produced amounts. Many factors can lead to high potassium, and these vary from mild to dangerous.
Sometimes, lab reports that show high blood potassium are inaccurate. If blood cells rupture while the technician is taking the blood sample or after he or she has obtained it, potassium can leak into the sample and cause a high reading. People with no other symptoms of high potassium should take a second blood test to ensure they are not treated for hyperkalemia if they do not have it.
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