03.19 Magnesium Sulfate


  1. Magnesium Sulfate
    1. Indications
      1. Treat hypomagnesemia
        1. Normal range 1.5-2.5
      2. Torsade de point
        1. Lethal arrhythmia caused by low Mg level- Code Blue!
      3. Preeclampsia
      4. Control seizures in pregnant women
      5. Maintain magnesium levels for patients receiving TPN
      6. Acute Asthma Exacerbations
        1. When patient is not responding to other treatments – usually last resort

Nursing Care


  1. Look for signs of Hyper magnesemia (toxicities = side effects of getting too much magnesium)
    1. Low bp
    2. Confusion
    3. Irregular heart beat
    4. Dizziness
    5. Muscle weakness
    6. Increase bleeding time
    7. Diarrhoea
    8. Depressed reflexes
    9. Resp distress (very rare usually level >3)

Therapeutic Management

  1. Monitor magnesium levels closely
  2. Monitor kidney function
  3. Monitor vital signs frequently when giving Magnesium via IV
    1. Looking for signs of respiratory depression and irregular heart rythms

Nursing Concepts

  1. Pharmacology
    1. Magensium is a medication that may be prescribed for a variety of conditions in a hospital setting and requires close monitoring for toxicities.

Patient Education

  1. Patients should be instructed to only take magnesium supplements under instructions of a provider.
  2. Patient should monitor for signs of hypermagnesemia and instructed to contact their provider if they experience heart arrhythmias and changes in respiratory patterns.

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  • Question 1 of 2

Your patient is a woman who is 36 weeks pregnant with severe preeclampsia. You have been monitoring her very closely and she was started on magnesium sulfate. However, she just had a seizure. You addressed the seizure appropriately and notified the physician. She is no longer exhibiting seizure activity and is stable. What is your next priority?

  • Question 2 of 2

A patient with high blood pressure during labor has been given magnesium sulfate IV. In addition to regulation of blood pressure and prevention of seizures, which of the following side effects would the nurse expect to see after administration of this medication?

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