Acute water intoxication in healthy infants

South Med J. 1986 Sep;79(9):1156-8. doi: 10.1097/00007611-198609000-00030.


We have described two infants with profound hyponatremia and seizures due to metabolic derangements resulting from inappropriate feeding of large volumes of solute-poor liquids. All of the 23 similar cases in the current literature described children with normal renal and neurologic function before and after the episode of hyponatremia. The chronic feeding of solute-poor fluids in these infants impaired their ability to excrete free water, and continued feeding of solute-poor fluids resulted in progressive hyponatremia and convulsions. Upon reinstitution of normal sodium intake, all metabolic abnormalities disappeared.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hyponatremia / etiology
  • Infant
  • Infant Food / adverse effects*
  • Infusions, Parenteral
  • Male
  • Seizures / etiology
  • Sodium Chloride / administration & dosage
  • Status Epilepticus / etiology
  • Water Intoxication / drug therapy
  • Water Intoxication / etiology*


  • Sodium Chloride