Dehydration in Adult
Diagnosis of dehydration may be suspected by percentage weight loss greater than 3% weight and changes in osmolality. The most common presentation of dehydration is hypernatremia.
Volume depletion (hypovolemia) can be caused by water loss or by salt and water loss. Isotonic dehydration occurs from balanced sodium and water loss, such as in fasting. Hypertonic dehydration is caused by imbalance created when fluid loss is greater than sodium loss, resulting in hyperosmolality and hypernatremia.
Signs and symptoms of mild to moderate dehydration include tachycardia, oliguria, orthostatic hypotension, dry mucous membranes, increased respirations, polydipsia, and irritability. Severe and life-threatening dehydration may additionally manifest as decreased blood pressure, sunken eyes or cheeks, anuria, cyanosis, shallow pulse, fasciculations, loss of consciousness, and coma.
E86.0 – Dehydration
34095006 – Dehydration
Differential Diagnosis & Pitfalls
- Electrolyte disturbance (hypo / hypernatremia, hypo / hypercalcemia)
- Thyroid disease
- Parathyroid disease
- Syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone secretion (SIADH)
- Gastrointestinal illness
- Renal failure
- Cardiogenic shock
- Hemorrhagic shock
- Anorexia nervosa
- Congenital adrenal hyperplasia
- Drug intoxication
Drug Reaction Data