Blood Volume Substitution

The human body contains 50-60 % water mainly in tissues and cells (e.g. a 70 kg adult carries 35-40 l water). The blood volume of an adult amounts approximately to 1/12 of the total body weight (e.g. 70 kg adult: 5-6 l blood).

Major losses of blood volume and body fluid (e.g. due to surgery or traumatic injuries) should be corrected immediately by administering infusion solutions, e.g. electrolytes and/or blood volume substitutes (hydroxyethyl starch) to avoid organ malperfusion secondary to hypovolaemia.