Skip to main content

Volume 18 Supplement 2

Sepsis 2014

Physiological changes after fluid bolus therapy in sepsis: a systematic review of the contemporary literature

Introduction

Fluid bolus therapy (FBT) is a ubiquitous intervention in intensive care. However, the physiological effects in the critically ill are poorly understood. Therefore, we systematically reviewed the contemporary literature to determine the current practice and effect of FBT in the management of severe sepsis and septic shock.

Methods

We interrogated the MEDLINE, CENTRAL and EMBASE electronic reference databases using a combination of terms to define a set of records of studies of fluid administration in patients with severe sepsis or septic shock. To achieve contemporary relevance, results were limited to English-language studies in adults between 2010 and 2013.

Results

We identified 22 prospective observational studies, four retrospective observational studies, two quasi-experimental studies, and five randomised controlled trials (RCTs), 41 boluses in total. No RCT compared FBT with alternative interventions. The median fluid bolus was 500 ml (range: 100 to 1,000 ml) administered over 30 minutes (range: 10 to 60 minutes) and 0.9% sodium chloride solution was the most commonly administered. Although 17 studies describe the temporal course of physiological changes after FBT in 31 patient groups, only three studies describe the physiological changes at 60 minutes, and only one study beyond this point (Figure 1). No studies related the physiological changes after FBT with clinically relevant outcomes.

Figure 1
figure1

Haemodynamic changes following FBT at 1, 2, 3 and 4 hours.

Conclusion

There is a need for obtaining randomised controlled evidence for the physiological effects of FBT in patients with severe sepsis and septic shock beyond the period immediately following its administration.

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to NJ Glassford.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Glassford, N., Eastwood, G. & Bellomo, R. Physiological changes after fluid bolus therapy in sepsis: a systematic review of the contemporary literature. Crit Care 18, P34 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1186/cc14037

Download citation

Keywords

  • Sodium Chloride
  • Randomise Control Trial
  • Septic Shock
  • Severe Sepsis
  • Physiological Effect