Our body contains approximately 1.8 g of sodium per kg of our weight.

Functions of Sodium

  1. Sodium is the principal electrolyte in the extracellular fluid which maintains normal osmotic pressure and water balance. It serves as a base in extracellular fluid.
  2. It contributes alkalinity to the gastro-intestinal secretions.
  3. Along with other ions, it maintains the normal irritability of nerve cells and muscle contractions.
  4. It regulates cell permeability.
  5. It maintains electrolyte differences between intracellular and extra-cellular fluid compartments.

Deficiency of Sodium

  1. Sodium depletion occurs in athletes and persons engaged in heavy labour. they lose significant amounts of sodium in sweat. Fluid must be taken liberally.
  2. A hormonal deficiency of ACTH in Addison's disease leads to large losses of sodium so that the patient hungers for sodium.
  3. Sodium depletion also occurs during continuous vomiting and diarrhoea.

Deficiency symptoms

  • Weakness
  • giddiness
  • nausea
  • lethargy
  • muscle cramps
  • in severe depletion there is circulatory failure.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *