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Hypovolemia in Infants
Hypovolemia is a low level of fluid in the body. Lower levels of blood make it hard to get nutrients and oxygen to the body. The heart, kidney, brain, and liver are at higher risk of harm. Treatment is needed right away.
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Causes may be:
Hypovolemia is more common in infants who are sick and have fever, vomiting, and diarrhea. Other things that may raise the risk are:
- Bacterial infections
- Childhood illnesses, such as bronchiolitis
- Not taking in enough fluids
Problems may be:
- Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
- Few wet diapers
- Abnormal drowsiness
- Sunken eyes
You will be asked about your baby’s symptoms and health history. A physical exam will be done.
Your doctor may check your baby’s blood flow by putting pressure on a nail bed.
The cause of the hypervolemia will need to be treated. The goal of treatment is to replace fluids. This can be done with rehydration therapy.
Healthy Children—American Academy of Pediatrics
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
Caring for Kids—Canadian Pediatric Society
Sick Kids—The Hospital for Sick Children
Canavan A, Arant BS Jr. Diagnosis and management of dehydration in children. Am Fam Physician. 2009 Oct 1;80(7):692-696
Dehydration and hypovolemia in infants and children. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/dehydration-and-hypovolemia-in-infants-and-children. Updated May 9, 2016. Accessed December 30, 2019.
- Reviewer: EBSCO Medical Review Board Kari Kassir, MD
- Review Date: 09/2019
- Update Date: 05/29/2020