Objectives: In this study, changes in lactate clearance following magnesium supplementation were evaluated in critically ill patients with severe sepsis.
Methods: Fifty-eight patients with severe sepsis were randomly assigned to receive either magnesium (n = 30) or placebo (n = 28). Patients in the magnesium group received intravenous magnesium sulfate to maintain serum magnesium level around 3 mg/dL for 3 days. The placebo group received the same volume of normal saline. Change in lactate clearance was considered primary outcome of the study.
Results: Mean increase in the lactate clearance in the magnesium group was significantly higher than the placebo group on day 2 (27.53% vs. 23.79% respectively, p < 0.001) and day 3 (49.83% vs. 37.02% respectively, p < 0.001). Time to lactate clearance was also significantly shorter in the magnesium group than the placebo group (47.28 ± 20.59 vs. 61.20 ± 24.31 h respectively, p = 0.03). Sepsis-related mortality was not significantly different but median length of ICU stay was significantly shorter in the magnesium group than the placebo group (8 vs. 15 days respectively, p < 0.01).
Conclusions: Magnesium supplementation increased lactate clearance in critically ill patients with severe sepsis. Optimizing serum magnesium level near the upper limit of the normal range may improve severe sepsis outcomes.
Keywords: Lactate; Lactate clearance; Magnesium; Sepsis; Severe sepsis.