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The normal range of serum magnesium concentrations is 1.7–2.4 mg/dl (0.7–1 mmol/l; 1.5–2 mEq/l) (Williamson et al. 2011). In the communities that switched to DSW in 2013, the mean serum magnesium was 2.065 ± 0.19 mg/dl before desalination. Following desalination, mean levels decreased to 2.057 ± 0.19 (p < 0.0001). In these communities 1.62% of subjects exhibited serum concentrations ≤1.6 mg/dl during 2010–2013. Their proportion increased by 18.5% in 2014–2016 to 1.91% (p = 0.0057) (Table 1).

Table 1

Pre (2010–2013) and post (2014–2016) desalination serum concentrations of magnesium in members of communities that consume, or do not consume DSW. Showing means and SD of serum magnesium, as well as proportions of subjects with levels ≤1.6 mg/dl

 Baseline (2010–2013)Post DSW introduction (2014–2016) 
DSW introduced n= 32,973 n= 22,050   
mean 2.065 ± 0.19 mg/dl 2.057 ± 0.19 p < 0.0001 
≤ 1.6 mg/dl 1.62% 1.91% p < 0.01 
DSW not introduced n= 6,368 n= 5,373   
mean 2.056 ± 0.2 mg/dl 2.063 ± 0.18 NS* 
≤ 1.6 mg/dl 2.18% 1.98% NS* 
 Baseline (2010–2013)Post DSW introduction (2014–2016) 
DSW introduced n= 32,973 n= 22,050   
mean 2.065 ± 0.19 mg/dl 2.057 ± 0.19 p < 0.0001 
≤ 1.6 mg/dl 1.62% 1.91% p < 0.01 
DSW not introduced n= 6,368 n= 5,373   
mean 2.056 ± 0.2 mg/dl 2.063 ± 0.18 NS* 
≤ 1.6 mg/dl 2.18% 1.98% NS* 

*Not significant.

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