Common IV solutions include hypertonic, hypotonic and isotonic solutions, states ATI. The solution chosen depends on the patient’s fluid volume balance and serum electrolyte values.
Isotonic solutions such as normal saline and lactated Ringer’s have an estimated electrolyte content of 300 mEq/L, notes ATI Testing. They help to replace fluid losses and to increase the intravascular volume. The electrolyte content in hypotonic solutions is less than 250 mEq/L. Hypotonic solutions such as 0.45% sodium chloride help to increase the intracellular space. They thin extracellular fluid and rehydrate the cells of patients with hypertonic fluid imbalances. They also treat loss of gastric fluid and dehydration from extreme diuresis.
Hypertonic solutions, used to treat hyponatremia, have an electrolyte content of at least 375 mEq/L, ATI explains. Examples include dextrose 10 percent in water and dextrose 5 percent in 0.9 percent sodium chloride.