If you are scheduled for surgery, it is in your best interest to start increasing your magnesium stores as soon as possible. All types of surgery decrease this mineral and this leads to a variety of complications including blood clots, abnormal heart rhythms, kidney failure, impaired brain function, strokes and even death. Magnesium plays such an important role in ensuring a patient’s survival that some doctors in Japan will not operate unless levels have been corrected (1).

Orthopedic and abdominal surgery deplete magnesium (2), but the drop is greater and lasts even longer after cardiac surgery (3,4,5). In fact, magnesium levels can decrease by a massive 52% with only a 5% improvement 24 hours later (6). This occurs in both adults and children and can result in serious neurological and cardiac problems, including abnormal heart rhythms (7,8,9). Atrial fibrillation (a common rhythm disorder), is decreased with magnesium supplementation (10,11).

“We recommend routine measurement of magnesium levels after CPB (cardiopulmonary bypass) in pediatric patients undergoing heart surgery, with timely magnesium supplementation in the postoperative period.” - Dr. B. Hugh Dorman, et al

“Stress” hormones, epinephrine and norepinephrine, stimulate the sympathetic nervous system, increasing blood pressure and accelerating the heart rate (12). Levels of these hormones are elevated after surgery but to an even greater extent when magnesium is not supplemented beforehand (13). Researchers have concluded that this mineral reduces the risk of complications arising during and after surgery.

“Magnesium administration is safe and improves short-term
postoperative neurologic function after cardiac surgery,
particularly in preserving short-term memory and
cortical control over brainstem functions.” - Dr. Sunil K. Bhudia (14).

The risk of developing or dying from a blood clot after surgery is high, and can last for up to 3 months (15). Magnesium has an anti-thrombotic effect and is a safe, natural way to thin the blood (16,17). In addition, it has been shown to improve hemodynamics (the movement of blood) in patients undergoing heart surgery (18) and decrease the need for painkillers in the post-operative period (19). Given intravenously, it decreases anaesthetic consumption (20) and prevents seizures in pregnant women with toxemia (21).

“It is the surgeon’s primary responsibility to make sure not only that the surgery is effective, but also to make sure that the complication rate of surgery is minimized as much as possible.” - Dr. Alexander Cohen, honorary consultant vascular physician at King’s College Hospital in London.

If you are going under the knife, cut down on caffeine, sugar, alcohol and smoking as these factors all deplete magnesium. The easiest, fastest way to increase levels of this essential mineral is through transdermal application (to the skin). Not only will it help prevent the numerous complications that may occur during and after surgery, but it will also accelerate healing and improve general wellbeing in the post-operative phase.

For more information: http://lampoflife1.blogspot.com/2010/09/surgery-and-magnesium.html

(1) Perioperative coronary artery spasm in off-pump coronary artery bypass grafting and its possible relation with perioperative hypomagnesemia. Ann Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2006 Feb;12(1):32-6.
PMID: 16572072 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE] Pubmed
(2) Koinig H, Wallner T, Marhofer P, Andel H, Hörauf K, Mayer N. Magnesium sulfate reduces intra- and postoperative analgesic requirements. Anesth Analg 1998; 87: 206–10.
(3) Thorax. 1972 March; 27(2): 212–218. Magnesium in patients undergoing open-heart surgery M. P. Holden, M. I. Ionescu, and G. H. Wooler
(4) Departments of Cardiothoracic Surgery and Cardiology, Gentofte Hospital, Copenhagen, Denmark
DOI: 10.3109/14017437809100355
(5) The CABG with extracorporeal circulation resulted in a significant decrease in blood Mg concentration. Changes of blood magnesium concentration in patients undergoing surgical myocardial revascularization. Pasternak, et al; Magnes Res. 2006 Jun;19(2):107-12j;http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?itool=abstractplus&db

(6) Speziale G, Ruvolo G, Fattouch K, et al. Arrhythmia prophylaxis after coronary artery bypass grafting: regimens of magnesium sulfate administration. Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 2000; 48: 22–6.[Medline]
(7) Ann R Coll Surg Engl. 1997 September; 79(5): 349–354.
(8) Dorman BH, Sade RM, Burnette JS, et al. Magnesium supplementation in the prevention of arrhythmias in pediatric patients undergoing surgery for congenital heart defects. Am Heart J 2000; 139: 522–8.[Medline]
(9) American Heart Journal. 2000;139(3)
(10) Delhumeau A, Granry JC, Cottineau C, Bukowski JG, Corbeau JJ, Moreau X. Comparative vascular effects of magnesium sulphate and nicardipine during cardiopulmonary bypass (French). Ann Fr Anesth Réanim 1995; 14: 149–53.[Medline]
(11) Ann Thorac Surg 2001;72:1256-1262
(12) http://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Epinephrine+and+Norepine...
(13) The effect of preoperative magnesium supplementation on blood catecholamine concentrations in patients undergoing CABG. Pasternak, et al; Magnes Res. 2006 Jun;19(2):113-22;http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?db=pubmed&cmd=Retrieve&dopt=
(14) Magnesium as a neuroprotectant in cardiac surgery: A randomized clinical trial. The Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery August 2007 (Vol. 134, Issue 2, Page A25) (15)http://news.yahoo.com/s/hsn/20091205/hl_hsn/bloodclotthreataftersurgeryworsethanthought
(16) Journal International Journal of Hematology. ISSN 0925-5710 Issue Volume 77, Number 4 / May, 2003
(17) http://www.drmyhill.co.uk/article.cfm?id=325
(18) The Effect of Magnesium Sulphate on Hemodynamics and Its Efficacy in Attenuating the Response to Endotracheal Intubation in Patients with Coronary Artery Disease G. D. Puri, MD, PhD*, K. S. Marudhachalam, MD, DA, DNB*, Pramila Chari, MD, FAMS, MAMS, DA?, and R. K. Suri, MS, FAMst Departments of *Anaesthesia and Intensive Care and tcardiothoracic and Vascular Surgery, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education & Research, Chandigarh, Indiahttp://www.anesthesia-analgesia.org/cgi/reprint/87/4/808.pdf
(19) Acta Anaesthesiologica Scandinavica, Volume 51, Number 4, April 2007 , pp. 482-489(8)
(20) European Journal of Anaesthesiology: October 2004 – Volume 21 – Issue 10 – pp 766-769
(21) Management of Obstetric Hypertensive Crises; OBG management; July 2005 • Vol. 17, No. 7http://www.obgmanagement.com/article_pages.asp?AID=3573&UID=

Author's Bio: 

My company (Veridical Light) introduced South Africa to transdermal magnesium at the beginning of 2010 to create awareness about this mineral therapy in South Africa and to make it easily accessible and affordable to all. We supply the public and health-care practitioners with Lamp of Life transdermal magnesium.