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Hypokalaemia with Guillain-Barré syndrome: a diagnostic and therapeutic challenge
  1. Arkapravo Hati1,
  2. Uddalak Chakraborty2,
  3. Atanu Chandra1 and
  4. Purbasha Biswas1
  1. 1Internal Medicine, RG Kar Medical College and Hospital, Kolkata, West Bengal, India
  2. 2Neurology, Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research Bangur Institute of Neurology, Kolkata, India
  1. Correspondence to Dr Atanu Chandra; chandraatanu123{at}


Acute-onset quadriparesis is not only debilitating and a grave concern for the patient but also perturbs the clinician as it demands early diagnosis and prompt management to prevent catastrophic outcome due to respiratory failure. Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) and hypokalaemia are notorious causes of acute-onset lower motor neuron (LMN) quadriparesis and warrant a rapid evaluation to necessitate early management. However, coexistence of these two entities is extremely rare and may pose a diagnostic and therapeutic challenge and mandates exclusion of either condition to avoid a poor outcome. We hereby report a case of a young woman who presented with an acute-onset LMN quadriparesis, initially found to have significant hypokalaemia with poor response to supplementation and was further evaluated to have an axonal variant of GBS.

  • Neurology
  • General practice / family medicine
  • Emergency medicine

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  • Contributors AH, UC and PB contributed to conception and initial drafting of the manuscript. UC and AC contributed to patient management, conception, critical revision of content and final approval of the manuscript. All authors are in agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Case reports provide a valuable learning resource for the scientific community and can indicate areas of interest for future research. They should not be used in isolation to guide treatment choices or public health policy.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.