Lactated Ringer’s solution, or LR, is an intravenous (IV) fluid you may receive if you’re dehydrated, having surgery, or receiving IV medications. It’s also sometimes called Ringer’s lactate or sodium lactate solution.
Both adults and children can receive lactated Ringer’s solution. Some of the reasons why a person may get this IV solution include:
to treat dehydration
to facilitate the flow of IV medication during surgery
to restore fluid balance after significant blood loss or burns
to keep a vein with an IV catheter open
Lactated Ringer’s is often the IV solution of choice if you have sepsis or infection so severe your body’s acid-base balance is thrown off.
Doctors may also use lactated Ringer’s as an irrigating solution. The solution is sterile (doesn’t have bacteria in it when stored properly). It can therefore be used to wash out a wound.
It can also be used during surgery to irrigate the bladder or a surgical site. This helps to wash away bacteria or make a surgical site easier to see.
Manufacturers don’t intend for people to drink lactated Ringer’s solution. It’s only meant for irrigation or IV use.
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