Solution to Frame 51
In the earlier sections of this module, the concepts
ANSWER: (Any 5 of the
of body fluid distribution, electrolyte distribution,
and fluid and electrolyte loss by both normal and
abnormal means were discussed. A certain
volume of fluid will be lost from the body each day
and this fluid will contain electrolytes. The fluids
and electrolytes lost each day must be replaced in
order to maintain proper physiological functioning.
If abnormal losses of fluids and electrolytes occur,
these losses must be corrected. Two main ways of
maintaining fluid and electrolyte balance and
replacing abnormal fluid and electrolyte losses are
available to the physician. These two methods of
maintenance and replacement are through the oral
(by mouth) route and by the intravenous route.
The oral route of administration offers the safest
and easiest method of replacing fluids and
electrolytes. For example, a patient being treated
with a thiazide diuretic can be given orange juice to
replace the potassium that is being lost in the urine.
Orange juice contains approximately 15
milliequivalents of potassium in each eight fluid
ounces. Also available are effervescent tablets
containing potassium. These tablets are supplied
in several palatable flavors. When the oral route is
used, the patient is able to move about freely and
the psychological impact of intravenous
administration is not present.
The second major route used to administer fluids
and electrolytes is by the intravenous route. The
intravenous route makes it possible to control the
volume of fluid and the numbers of each electrolyte
to be given. One problem inherent in the
intravenous administration of fluids is that
frequently the patient is immobilized, it is very
difficult to maneuver with all the intravenous
apparatus hanging from one's arm.