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Intravenous fluids hydration in developing countries

17 May 2020 at 22:58 | 706 views

Intravenous fluids hydration in developing countries.

By Dr. Nanah Sheriff Fofanah-Sesay, Special Contributor to the Patriotic Vanguard

The practice of administering intravenous fluids (IVF’s) hydration to people with health issues in developing countries is more common and accepted by citizens than most believe.

The purpose of this article is to outline the benefits of IVF’s hydration, adverse effects of IVF’s hydration, and make recommendations for the proper implementation of this practice.

Let me start with the benefits of IVF’s hydration. For those suffering from dehydration, as evidenced by elevated blood urea nitrogen, creatinine, and other physical symptoms such as weakness, poor skin turgor, dry skin, and excessive thirst, intravenous (IV) therapy injects fluids directly into the blood stream for faster delivery of fluids where it is needed the most. In addition, IVF hydration replenishes the body with necessary nutrients and electrolytes at a more rapid rate. On the same sentiment, IV hydration allows the body to absorb more nutrients and fluids without having to rely on the digestive system. Moreover, IV hydration helps the body to recover fluids loss from excessive urination, diarrhea, vomiting, excessive sweating, and loss of fluids from workout.

Other benefits of IV hydration includes but not limited to athletic recovery, energy boosts, hangover recovery, skin care, and immunity boosts for individuals who are immunocompromised from cancer, HIV/AIDs, uncontrolled diabetes mellitus, hepatitis and other conditions. In addition, IV hydration can help individuals to avoid common illnesses by providing a quick and efficient dose of immunity boosting compounds such as Vitamin C and Vitamin B12. Fluid deficit or dehydration can lead to excessive buildup of toxins from potassium, calcium, sodium, magnesium, and glucose in the blood stream. This can be avoided with IV hydration through flushing the body with clean fluids. It also helps with the improvement of the functioning of vital organs such as the liver and kidneys. IV hydration no doubt improves the functioning of the brain as evidenced by improved cognition through better decision making and judgements.

Other signs of inadequate IVF’s in the body includes dry skin, joint pains, and muscle aches therefore, IV hydration can rapidly improve the normal functioning of these areas.

Since all therapies entails some sort of adverse effects, let me now bring to your attention the adverse effects of IV hydration. The administration of IVF’s either too much or too little volume and incorrect type of fluids is a significant cause of patients’ morbidity and mortality. An example of patients’ morbidity and mortality associated with the adverse effects of IVF’s is the administration of 0.9 percent normal saline to an individual with a blood pressure of 200/120. This intervention on this individual can cause the blood pressure to further increase exponentially resulting in stroke or cardiac arrest. The same is true when administering a large amount of fluids to an individual with congestive heart failure with an ejection fraction of 10 to 20 percent. This intervention can lead to complete cardiovascular collapse and causes pressure within the heart and blood vessels to increase as fluids accumulates. This accumulation also called fluid overload may force fluids to shift into the lungs resulting in severe shortness of breath.

Other adverse effects of fluid overload are hypoalbuminemia or low albumin and low red blood cells as well as edema of lower and upper extremities and face. These adverse effects can impair pulmonary functions, increasing the risk of symptomatic respiratory failure.

These are my recommendations for the proper administration of IVF’s.
Prior to administering IVF’s hydration,
1. The individual’s pre-existing cardiopulmonary and renal condition as well as the severity of pathophysiological changes associated with the illness presented must be taken into consideration.
2. Consider fluid restrictions on individuals who are fluid overloaded or suspected fluid overloaded.
3. In developing countries, IVF’s hydration must be done in a clinical setting and provided by clinicians who have mandated knowledge and experience to do so.
4. IV cannulations must be done by clinicians who have mandated knowledge and experience to do so since inappropriate cannulation can lead to infiltrations and infections of the affected site and beyond.

The practice of IVF’s hydration at home by inexperience individuals in developing countries is wide-spread and likely causing a high rate of mortalities and morbidities in these countries. It is my recommendation that the governments in developing countries enact stiff laws that will deter this practice by lay-individuals in non-clinical settings. It is my hope that allowing knowledgeable and experienced clinicians as the sole professionals to implement IV hydration in clinical settings will very likely reduce adverse effects associated with this practice.

This article is dedicated to all individuals and their families who have been affected by adverse effects from improper administration of IVF’s in developing countries.

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