PURPOSE OF REVIEW: To review the advances in the assessment, treatment, and evaluation of care for pediatric dehydration.
RECENT FINDINGS: Recent studies have added new information across the spectrum of care for dehydration. Advances in the assessment of dehydration allow more accurate clinical evaluation, but do not help predict the treatment outcomes. Antiemetics as an adjunct to oral rehydration therapy have been proven well tolerated, efficacious, and cost-effective. Rapid, large-volume intravenous rehydration for outpatients with dehydration did not show any benefit over more standard regimens. Clinical guidelines incorporate all these aspects of care; however, physicians show poor adherence to the guidelines despite the evidence that guidelines improve outcomes and reduce cost. SUMMARY: Dehydration burdens the healthcare system worldwide. Through advances in its assessment, treatment with antiemetics and intravenous fluids, and standardization of practice with clinical guidelines, this burden could be reduced.
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