Hypovolemic shock is a medical emergency in which there is severe loss of fluids and blood and the heart is unable to pump enough blood to bear with the loss. The severity of the shock can result in many organs to stop working. To be more specific there is a decrease in the blood plasma volume which in an intravascular component and the most essential one. Hypovolemic shock is different from dehydration where there is loss of water from the body.
Loss of about 1/5 of the normal amount of blood from the body can lead to a hypovolemic shock. The blood loss can be from cuts, bleeding from injuries any internal injury like in the gastrointestinal tract, and more. Also, the amount of blood circulating in the body can drop when there is a loss of other fluids as a result of vomiting, diarrhea or burns. The more rapid and greater the loss of blood the severe is the hypovolemic shock.
The signs and symptoms of hypovolemia include:
• Cold skin
• Agitation and anxiety
• Decrease in the output of urine
• Feeling of weakness in general
• Paleness in skin
• Rapidness in breathing
• Moist skin and increased sweating
• Falling unconscious
Hypovolemic shock can result in orthostatic hypotension, which means there can be lowered blood pressure. The person feels dizzy and might even lose consciousness. Hypovolemia can hinder the amount of blood that the heart pumps to the organs. This indicates that there are many signs related to the heart caused by hypovolemia. One of the major signs is tachycardia, which is characterized by the rapid beating of the heart.
The skin loses its elasticity and inability to be stretched as compared to normal. This is the result of loss of fluid from the body and reduction in the blood volume. The temperature of the body is regulated by different factors; any change in the loss of fluid, intake of fluid or alteration in perspiration can result in rise or fall of body temperature. Another sign of hypovolemia can be increase in the body temperature.
There are a number of exams and tests performed for ruling hypovolemia. Some of these examinations include low blood pressure, rapid pulse and low body temperature. Some of the other confirmatory tests include total blood count, echocardiogram, CT scan, endoscopy, right heart catheterization, and more. If a person is seen to have huge blood loss then a medical practitioner should be contacted immediately. Until help arrives the affected person should be kept warm and comfortable. The person should be made to lie down with the feet at an elevated position. No fluids should be given orally and if the person is allergic to something and you know how to treat the allergy then treatment should be started.
When admitted, the person is given blood intravenously and along with medicines like dopamine, epinephrine dobutamine, and norepinephrine. The aim is to retain the body fluids. It is important to get immediate help so that the body functions can be restored quickly.