Paediatric Gastroenteritis Essay Example

  • Category:
    Nursing
  • Document type:
    Assignment
  • Level:
    Undergraduate
  • Page:
    4
  • Words:
    2360

Paediatric Gastroenteritis

Introduction

Paediatric gastroenteritis is a medical condition that affects the children. It is characterized by dehydration which weakens the body. The loss of fluid in the body leads to dry skin among the children (Mandell, 2010). Bacteria or viruses are the main cause of the condition both in adults and children. Sharing of objects is a means through which the virus spreads in both adults and children. The use of contaminated milk bottles among the children is one of the factors that cause the condition. Rehydration on the other hand is a mechanism that is used to restore the fluids that has been lost due to the dehydration caused by the condition. The use of oral rehydration solution is one of the mechanisms that are used to combat the dehydration. This is achieved through the use of salt, sugar and water mixture. However this is mainly for the mild and moderate cases. The use of oral rehydration therapy has been successful in some instances while in others it is not advisable. The use of intravenous fluid therapy is also a mechanism that is used to combat the condition. This has raised the question of which of the two methods is effective when dealing with rehydration in pediatric gastroenteritis. The paper thus discusses the issue of which method is effective between oral rehydration therapy and intravenous fluid therapy.

Oral rehydration therapy

The oral rehydration therapy is the medical treatment that is meant to counter the dehydration that is caused by the paediatric gastroenteritis. This mainly involves the use of liquid solution that is usually administered orally. On the other hand, this method does not require the administration by medical personnel. It can be administered by an adult to the children with the adults can preparing the solution. The composition of the fluid usually varies depending on the ingredients that are used. Nitrate, sodium, potassium and citrate are the main ingredients that are used for the purposes of preparing the fluid (Pavani, 2008). In some instances, chicken soup or yoghurt has also been used for the purposes of combating dehydration both in children. The use of oral rehydration therapy is considered effective as it has reduced the number of deaths among the patients suffering from diseases like Cholera and dysentery. These two diseases are characterized by paediatric gastroenteritis. The World Health Organization recognizes the use of oral rehydration therapy for the purposes of combating dehydration caused by pediatric gastroenteritis. When administering it to the children, a teaspoon of the solution is usually given after every two minutes. This has the potential of reducing the dehydration and is effective within one hour of administration. It is however advisable to ensure that the administration is paused when the patient is vomiting. A dropper or a syringe is usually used in the case of a baby during the administration process.

Intravenous fluid therapy

The intravenous fluid therapy involves the direct infusion of liquid into the veins of the patient experiencing the dehydration due to the paediatric gastroenteritis. This method is also referred to as drip as the drip chamber is usually used. An estimated flow rate should also be considered when using this method to administer the fluids to the patients. A fusion pump is commonly used when the flow rate has to be controlled. However, in stances where the change in flow rate cannot cause any serious consequences, it is not necessary to use a fusion pump. Caution should also be taken to ensure that air does not enter the blood stream of the patient. It is for these reasons that the administration of the fluid should be done by an expert. Due to the direct infusion of the fluid to the blood stream, this method is considered the fastest in terms of delivering fluid to the body and hence combating dehydration that is caused by the paediatric gastroenteritis (Spandorfer, et al, 2010). The most convenient site for the injection is the veins on the back of the hands. This is applicable to both the adults and the children. This method should however be done carefully to ensure that the tissue damage does not take place. In most cases, this method is usually used in the hospitals as it can only be administered by the medical personnel in the hospitals as poor administration may lead to complications.

The efficiency of the two methods during the rehydration process has always raised a debate. The use of the oral rehydration therapy is easier as compared to the intravenous fluid therapy. This is because the patients can administer the treatment on their own and in the comfort of their homes (Canadian Paediatric Society, Nutrition Committee, 2006). This is because it only requires the consumption of the prepared fluids. On the other hand, the administration of the intravenous therapy is complicated and it can only be done by a medical personnel. This presents a challenge to the patients who do not have access to the hospitals and medical facilities. The administration by the medical personnel is for the purposes of avoiding any complication that may arise during the administration. According to the world health organization, the use of the oral rehydration therapy has reduced the mortality rates among the children suffering from the gastroenteritis. This is an indication that the method is efficient among the patients. However, this is only in the moderate cases when the condition of the patient is not serious. The method has not been able to post good results in terms of preventing dehydration among the patients in serious conditions. The intravenous fluid therapy on the other hand has been able to treat the patients suffering from serious conditions. This is because it has the fastest rate of fluid delivery in the body. It is also for this reason that the method is considered efficient as compared to the use of the oral rehydration therapy.

The side effects of the methods are also criteria that have led to the debate regarding the efficiency of the two methods. The use of the oral fluid treatment does not have any side effects among most of the patients. The taste of the fluid is the only issue among some of the patients. The taste however has no negative impact on the efficiency of the method. However, the use of the intravenous fluid therapy has some effects on the patients due to the injection. The collapse of the veins is one of the problems that are usually associated with the injections of the vein. This means that the method cannot be used over a long period of time when dealing with the dehydration among the children. The use of the oral rehydration fluid takes about an hour for the dehydration to be reduced. This may have a negative impact on the patient with a high rate of dehydration. However, the use of the intravenous fluid therapy takes a shorter time and hence its efficiency in the treatment of the patients with the gastroenteritis condition. The expenses involved during the treatment of the condition are also of debate. This is considering that the patients in the third world countries may not have access to the hospital facilities. This therefore rules out the use of the intravenous fluid therapy among the patients. The use of the oral rehydration therapy is thus common among the people who do not have access to the medical facilities (Monasch, 2000). However this does not mean that the use of the intravenous fluid therapy is not efficient in the treatment of the patients.

Position

The use of the intravenous fluid treatment and the oral rehydration treatment are both considered effective methods of treating the dehydration of the patients in gastroenteritis. It has been argued by some of the researchers that both methods should be used at the same time. This is however during the critical condition. The patent may start by using the oral rehydration therapy before being administered with the intravenous fluid therapy. On the other hand, the use of the oral rehydration therapy is usually recommended for the children whose condition is not serious. This is because of the duration that the method takes before fully combating the dehydration that is caused by the gastroenteritis. The use of the oral rehydration therapy is also considered efficient the children and should be used in the first instant that the patient is experiencing the condition. This is an important step towards preventing the dehydration of the patient. In young children, the method is also highly recommended and it has proved to be efficient in terms of saving lives. It is also argued that the use of the intravenous fluid injection should the last option in terms of treating the patients suffering from the gastroenteritis. The circulation of the fluid is fast through the use of the intravenous fluid injection. It is for this reason that it is recommended for use among the patients with serious conditions.

The use of the oral rehydration treatment is also efficient in terms of reducing vomiting and stool volume. This is because it reduces the stool volume by twenty five percent and vomiting by thirty percent. Vomiting is one of the ways in which dehydration takes place among the patients suffering from the gastroenteritis (Hahn, 2002). The higher the stool volume, the higher the rate of dehydration. The reduction in the stool volume as well as vomiting is thus an important measure that reduces the dehydration of the patients.

The need for intravenous fluid injection is also reduced by thirty three percent. This indicates that the use of oral fluid therapy is an important aspect of reducing dehydration among the patients. On the other hand, the oral dehydration therapy is also considered as the most advanced discovery of the twentieth century. This is because of its ability to save lives among the patients suffering from the gastroenteritis. The use of the oral rehydration therapy is also responsible for saving the lives of more than five million patients worldwide each year. The intravenous fluid injection is also efficient in terms of saving the lives of the people under critical conditions. This method is also important for the patients who are undergoing malnutrition and are suffering from the gastroenteritis. This is because of the fast infusion of the fluid in the body through the use of the intravenous fluid therapy. It is however important to note that the use of the oral rehydration therapy allows the patients to continue with some of the activities like eating and also breastfeeding about the children.

Efficiency of the methods

According to the information obtained from the position and the debate, the use of intravenous fluid therapy is more efficient than the oral rehydration therapy in terms of dealing with the gastroenteritis. This is because of its ability to ensure that the fluid is circulated in the body at a higher rate after the injection. This is compared to the use of the oral hydration therapy. However, this does not mean that the use of the oral rehydration therapy is not efficient. This is because it has posted positive results where it has been applied. This is because of reducing the number of deaths of millions of people worldwide. Its efficiency is however limited to the moderate situations where the patient is not losing the fluids at a high rate. The use of the intravenous fluid injection is however applicable to all the situations facing the patients with gastroenteritis. It is for this reason that the method is efficient as compared to the use of the oral rehydration therapy which cannot save lives in serious situation. The intravenous fluid therapy may also have some weaknesses but it is still the most efficient method. The weaknesses could be due to the effects that it may have on the veins after a long use. On the other hand, it requires the involvement of the experts in order to administer it. This is unlike the oral rehydration therapy which does not require the administration by medical personnel.

Conclusion

In conclusion, gastroenteritis is a serious condition that causes the dehydration of the patients which may result to deaths. Two methods are commonly used with an aim of combating the dehydration of the patients. The use of the oral rehydration therapy is popular among most of the patients and it involves the consumption of the fluid solutions. The intravenous fluid therapy on the other hand involves the direct fission of the fluid to the patients. This is achieved through the injection of the patient for the purposes of administering the therapy. Both methods have advantages as well as disadvantages. However, it is evident that both methods are efficient and have the ability of saving the life of the patient. The intravenous fluid therapy is however the most efficient method in terms of dealing with the patients experiencing the gastroenteritis. It is also evident that the intravenous fluid therapy can be used under any condition of the patient and hence its efficiency.

References

Mandell, J, 2010, Mandell, Douglas, and Bennett’s principles and practice of infectious diseases (7th ed.), Philadelphia, PA: Churchill Livingstone/Elsevier

Pavani, R, 2008, «Declines in case management of diarrhea among children less than five years old», Bulletin of the World Health Organization,
86 (3): 240–240.

Canadian Paediatric Society, Nutrition Committee, 2006, «Oral rehydration therapy and early refeeding in the management of childhood gastroenteritis», Paediatrics & Child Health
11 (8): 527–531.

Monasch, R, 2000, «Reducing deaths from diarrhoea through oral rehydration therapy», Bulletin of the World Health Organization (WHO), 78 (10): 1246–55.

Hahn, S, 2002, «Reduced osmolarity oral rehydration solution for treating dehydration caused by acute diarrhoea in children», Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (1): CD002847.

MacGillivray, N, 2009, «Dr Thomas Latta: the father of intravenous infusion therapy», Journal of Infection Prevention,
10 (Suppl. 1): 3–6.

Ayus, C, et al, 2010, Improving intravenous fluid therapy in children with gastroenteritis, Pediatric Nephrology, Volume 25, Issue 8, pp 1383-1384.

Spandorfer, P, et al,
2012,  A Randomized Clinical Trial of Recombinant Human Hyaluronidase-Facilitated Subcutaneous Versus Intravenous Rehydration in Mild to Moderately Dehydrated Children in the Emergency Department
Clinical Therapeutics,  34  (11) , pp. 2232-2245.