Brief Article
Copyright ©2012 Baishideng. All rights reserved.
World J Exp Med. Feb 20, 2012; 2(1): 1-6
Published online Feb 20, 2012. doi: 10.5493/wjem.v2.i1.1
Effects of tap water, electrolyte solution, and spontaneous and furosemide-stimulated urinary excretion on thirst
Yu-Hong Li, Nana Waldréus, Joachim Zdolsek, Robert G Hahn
Yu-Hong Li, Department of Anesthesia, College of Medicine, Zhejiang University, 310058 Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, China
Yu-Hong Li, Joachim Zdolsek, Robert G Hahn, Department of Anesthesia, Faculty of Health Sciences, Linköping University, SE-581 85 Linköping, Sweden
Nana Waldréus, Robert G Hahn, Section for Research, Department of Patient Safety and Quality, Södertälje Hospital, SE-152 86 Södertälje, Sweden
Author contributions: Li YH conducted the experiments; Zdolsek J organized the experiments; Waldréus N and Hahn RG wrote the manuscript; Hahn RG designed the study.
Correspondence to: Robert G Hahn, MD, PhD, Professor, Department of Anesthesia, Faculty of Health Sciences, Linköping University, SE-581 85 Linköping, Sweden.
Telephone: +46-73-9660972 Fax: +46-85-5024671
Received: September 16, 2011
Revised: January 1, 2012
Accepted: February 13, 2012
Published online: February 20, 2012

AIM: To contrast the effects of various modifications of body fluid volumes on thirst as reported by healthy volunteers.

METHODS: Ten male volunteers aged between 19 and 37 years (mean 22 years) underwent four experiments each, which comprised infusion of 400-800 mL of acetated Ringer’s solution and intake of 600 mL of tap water. Half of the experiments were preceded by volume depletion (median 1.7 L) with furosemide. A visual analogue scale (0-100 mm) was used to assess perceived thirst during each experiment.

RESULTS: Volume depletion (P < 0.001) and tap water (P < 0.03) both affected thirst by 13 mm per L of fluid, whereas spontaneous diuresis and infusion of Ringer’s acetate did not significantly change the thirst rating (multiple regressions). More detailed analyses showed that the volume depletion increased the median (25th-75th percentiles) thirst rating from 28 mm (21-43) to 59 mm (46-72, P < 0.001) while no change occurred in those who were only slightly thirsty (< 30 mm) before the volume depletion began. Ringer’s solution alleviated thirst in those who were very thirsty, but tended to increase thirst in the volunteers who were not thirsty before the infusion. Similarly, hydration with tap water decreased thirst (by 24 mm, P < 0.04) in those who were thirsty (> 60 mm) while the others reported no change.

CONCLUSION: The change in thirst rating during volume depletion, administration of Ringer’s acetate, and ingestion of tap water were all dependent on the thirst rating obtained when the manipulation of the body fluid volume was initiated.

Keywords: Thirst perception, Body fluid, Homeostasis, Volume depletion