What is the role of oral rehydration solution (ORS) for acute infectious diarrhea?
ORS has revolutionized the treatment of acute infectious diarrhea worldwide. ORS takes advantage of the fact that sodium and glucose are cotransported in the jejunum, a mechanism unaffected by pathologic increases in intestinal secretion that leads to enhanced water absorption. The use of World Health Organization ORS has been shown in numerous trials to decrease morbidity in adults and both morbidity and mortality in children. Head-to-head trials show ORS to be equivalent to IV hydration for acute gastroenteritis therapy in children. Because it decreases diarrheal volume, the low hypoosmolar ORS is preferred.