There is a misconception in the medical community regarding Hyponatremia (low sodium) and the benefit of salt tablets. Of course it makes sense on the surface, your sodium (salt) level is low so take more salt right? Wrong! I’m sorry but it’s usually not the ideal strategy, especially in SIADH or Hypervolemic hyponatremia, as in heart failure (CHF). Let’s examine CHF first. CHF by name is congestive heart failure which implies correctly, that the patient is congested with salt and fluid.
This is why CHF is usually treated with diuretics (medicines that make you pee salt and water). This decongesting process is actually what rids the body of excess fluid that is diluting the sodium level. Patients with CHF are asked to go on a sodium restriction diet to prevent congestion and this, along with diuretics, most often improves the sodium levels. UreaAide may be of benefit here as it will, salt free, draw off the excess fluid.
Now let’s examine SIADH. The Syndrome of Inappropriate Anti-Diuretic Hormone. Again the name gives it away. A syndrome that is inappropriately releasing a hormone, that inhibits (anti) diuresis (fluid excretion via kidneys). I know it sounds complicated, in essence your body is being signaled to hold water too tightly. The urine is dark and concentrated and you are incapable of releasing water well. Water builds up and dilution of your serum sodium occurs, manifesting as a low sodium on labs. The simplest and safest way to combat this is to excrete the excess water.
There is a chemical pharmaceutical, tolvaptan, that inhibits this directly, however the wholesale cost is $360/pill and tolvaptan harbors a risk of liver toxicity as well as overly rapid correction leading to brain swelling. You can combine diuretics such as furosemide, salt tablets and fluid restriction with varying success, but your still consuming a bunch of salt.
The best method that is safe, completely salt free and cost effective is with Urea. Urea, an osmotic diuretic, is like taking 7 salt tablets per dose and will draw the water out safely and effectively via osmosis. You will pee the excess water out and increases your serum sodium without any strong drugs or excess salt. UreaAide (the better Urea) happens to taste great, cost less and dissolve rapidly in just 4oz of water. So yes you can, and probably should, come off all those salt tablets, especially if you’ve been diagnosed with SIADH. So ask your doctor if UreaAide may be right for you!
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