UMEM Educational Pearls


Plasma-Lyte A outperformed 0.9% NaCl for rehydration in children with acute gastroenteritis showing a more rapid improvement in serum bicarbonate levels and dehydration scores.


This was a prospective randomized double blinded study in 8 pediatric emergency departments. Patients were at least 6 months old and younger than 11 years. To be included they had to have at least 3 episodes of vomiting or diarrhea in the previous 12 hours and a Gorelick score of at least 4. 100 children were included. Serum bicarbonate was measured at 0 and 4 hours and dehydration scores were reassessed. There was a change of bicarbonate of 1.6 mEq/L for plasma-lyte A (PLA) and no change for sodium chloride. There as an improvement in the dehydration score at 2 hours for the PLA group, but the dehydration scores were not statistically significant between the 2 groups at the 4 hours mark.


Allen et al. A randomized trial of Plasma-Lyte A and 0.9% sodium chloride in acute pediatric gastroenteritis. BMC Pediatrics 2016 16:117.