Magnesium Balance and Measurement

Adv Chronic Kidney Dis. 2018 May;25(3):224-229. doi: 10.1053/j.ackd.2018.03.002.


Magnesium is an essential ion in the human body, playing an important role in practically every major metabolic and biochemical process, supporting and maintaining cellular processes critical for human life. Magnesium plays an important physiological role, particularly in the brain, heart, and skeletal muscles. As the second most abundant intracellular cation after potassium, it is involved in over 600 enzymatic reactions including energy metabolism and protein synthesis. Magnesium has been implicated in and used as treatment of several diseases. Although the importance of magnesium is widely acknowledged, routine serum magnesium levels are not routinely evaluated in clinical medicine. This review provides a discussion as to where magnesium is stored, handled, absorbed, and excreted. We discuss approaches for the assessment of magnesium status.

Keywords: Homeostasis; Magnesium balance; Measurement.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Homeostasis*
  • Humans
  • Kidney / metabolism
  • Kidney / physiopathology
  • Magnesium / blood
  • Magnesium / physiology*
  • Magnesium Deficiency / blood
  • Magnesium Deficiency / diagnosis
  • Magnesium Deficiency / physiopathology


  • Biomarkers
  • Magnesium