Fluid Resuscitation in Patients Presenting with Sepsis: Current Insights

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Intravenous (IV) fluid resuscitation is a key component of the initial resuscitation of septic shock, with international consensus guidelines suggesting the administration of at least 30mL/kg of isotonic crystalloid fluid. The rationale is to restore circulating fluid volume and optimise stroke volume. It is acknowledged that there is a paucity of high-level evidence to support this strategy, with most studies being observational or retrospective in design. In the past decade, evidence has emerged that a large positive fluid balance is associated with worse outcomes among patients with septic shock in intensive care who have already received initial resuscitation. Randomised trials undertaken in low-income countries have found increased mortality among patients with sepsis and hypoperfusion administered a larger fluid volume as part of initial resuscitation, however, translating these findings to other settings is not possible. This uncertainty has led to variation in practice with some advocating a more conservative fluid strategy coupled with the earlier introduction of vasopressors for haemodynamic support. This question is the subject of several ongoing clinical trials. This article summarises the current state of the evidence for IV fluid resuscitation in septic shock and provides guidance for practitioners in the face of our evolving understanding of this important area.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)633-638
Number of pages6
JournalOpen Access Emergency Medicine
Publication statusPublished - 29 Nov 2022


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