Magnesium sulfate as a medication is used to treat and prevent low blood magnesium and seizures in women with eclampsia. It is also used in the treatment of torsades de pointes, severe asthma exacerbations, constipation, and barium poisoning. It is given by injection into a vein or muscle as well as by mouth. As epsom salts, it is also used for mineral baths.
Deficiencies include hyper-excitability, muscular symptoms (cramps, tremor, fasciculations, spasms, tetany, weakness), fatigue, loss of appetite, apathy, confusion, insomnia, irritability, poor memory, and reduced ability to learn. Low magnesium levels can be caused by alcoholism, severe diarrhea, malnutrition, or high calcium levels.
Magnesium sulfate is the primary treatment and preventative measure in women with eclampsia. It lowers systolic blood pressure while maintaining diastolic blood pressure, thus leaving blood flow to the fetus un-compromised.
Benefits: It works by replacing magnesium in the body and increasing water in the intestines. The medicine can also be used intravenously (through an IV) to control seizures in pregnant women and certain children. It can also be used to treat a dangerous arrhythmia, lower high blood pressure, slow down contractions during labor, and treat other conditions.
Magnesium has been shown to have therapeutic value in treating conditions such as headaches, chronic pain, asthma, and sleep disorders. And in recent large scale study, magnesium has been linked to a reduced incidence of conditions such as heart disease, hypertension and diabetes.