Intravenous sugar solution
An intravenous sugar solution is a solution with a sugar (usually glucose, a.k.a. dextrose, with water as the solvent) used for intravenous therapy, where it may function both as a means of maintaining tissue hydration and a means of parenteral nutrition.
Types of glucose/dextrose include:
- D5W (5% dextrose in water), which consists of 278 mmol/L dextrose
- D5NS (5% dextrose in normal saline), which, in addition, contains normal saline (0.90% w/v of NaCl).
- D5 1/2NS 5% dextrose in half amount of normal saline (0.45% w/v of NaCl).
Administering a 5% sugar solution peri- and postoperatively usually achieves a good balance between starvation reactions and hyperglycemia caused by sympathetic activation. A 10% solution may be more appropriate when the stress response from the reaction has decreased, after approximately one day after surgery. After more than approximately 2 days, a more complete regimen of total parenteral nutrition is indicated.
In patients with hypernatremia and euvolemia, free water can be replaced using either 5% D/W or 0.45% saline.