[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
May 5, 1975

Use and Abuse of Intravenous Solutions

Author Affiliations

From the Clinical Section, Department of Hypertension and Nephrology, the Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland.

JAMA. 1975;232(5):533-536. doi:10.1001/jama.1975.03250050049021

THIS REVIEW of the uses and dangers of intravenous fluid therapy is part of the Drug Spotlight Program of the American Society for Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics. It is hoped that it will stimulate hospital pharmacy and therapeutics committees to review critically the use of intravenous fluids in their institutions.

Purposes of Fluid Therapy  Establishing and maintaining adequate composition of fluids and electrolytes in patients who suffer from a variety of diseases has become one of the most important functions of modern hospitals. Therapy of disturbed metabolism of fluids and electrolytes is also one of the most frequently misunderstood and most difficult problems for clinicians who are not accustomed to thinking in quantitative terms and who may focus on only one aspect of a complex situation.Intravenous fluids are used (1) to maintain normal body composition when normal food or fluid intake is impossible and (2) to correct acute or