Letters to the Editor
- Chris Commens, Joyce Wu, Andrew Carter
- Aust Prescr 2007;30:140-1
- 1 December 2007
- DOI: 10.18773/austprescr.2007.084
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Editor, – In the article on magnesium by Dr Wu and Dr Carter (Aust Prescr 2007;30:102-5) there is little attempt to address the issue of cramps and magnesium ingestion by the public. My clinical experience has been that every aged patient who has any problem with cramping, has either tried, or is on, oral magnesium usually from the supermarket or health store. This is often magnesium phosphate.
Could the authors comment on the issue of cramping and adults over the age of fifty years? Is there any evidence that lack of magnesium causes this, or that oral magnesium is of any benefit?
Pennant Hills, NSW
Dr J Wu and Dr A Carter, authors of the article, comment:
In response to Professor Commens, a literature search performed in consultation with our pharmacology unit failed to raise any conclusive evidence that magnesium phosphate is useful in preventing cramps in the elderly. This is not to say that biochemically proven hypomagnesaemia would not respond to supplementation, in the same way as hypocalcaemia or hypokalaemia would require calcium or potassium supplementation respectively.
Dermatologist, Pennant Hills, NSW
Registrar, Department of Chemical Pathology, Queensland Health Pathology Service, Brisbane
Director, Department of Chemical Pathology, Queensland Health Pathology Service, Brisbane