Hydrogen gas was reported to reduce reactive oxygen species and alleviate cerebral, myocardial and hepatic ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) injuries. This paper studied the effect of hydrogen-rich saline, which was easier for clinical application, on the intestinal I/R injury. Model of intestinal I/R injury was induced in male Sprague-Dawley rats. Physiological saline, hydrogen-rich saline or nitrogen-rich saline (5 ml/kg) was administered via intravenous infusion at 10 min before reperfusion, respectively. The intestine damage was detected microscopically and was assessed by Chiu score system after I/R injury. In addition, serum DAO activity, TNF-alpha, IL-1beta and IL-6 levels, tissue MDA, protein carbonyl and MPO activity were all increased significantly by I/R injury. Hydrogen-rich saline reduced these markers and relieved morphological intestinal injury, while no significant reduction was observed in the nitrogen-rich saline-treated animals. In conclusion, hydrogen-rich saline protected the small intestine against I/R injury, possibly by reduction of inflammation and oxidative stress.