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IntroductionFluid resuscitation is a cornerstone of severe sepsis management, however there are many uncertainties surrounding the type and volume of fluid that is administered. The entire spectrum of coagulopathies can be seen in sepsis, from asymptomatic aberrations to fulminant disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC). The aim of this study was to determine if fluid resuscitation with saline contributes to the haemostatic derangements in an ovine model of endotoxemic shock.Materials and methodsTwenty-one adult female sheep were randomly divided into no endotoxemia (n = 5) or endotoxemia groups (n = 16) with an escalating dose of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) up to 4 μg/kg/h administered to achieve a mean arterial pressure below 60 mmHg. Endotoxemia sheep received either no bolus fluid resuscitation (n = 8) or a 0.9% saline bolus (40 mL/kg over 60 min) (n = 8). No endotoxemia, saline only animals (n = 5) underwent fluid resuscitation with a 0.9% bolus of saline as detailed above. Hemodynamic support with vasopressors was initiated if needed, to maintain a mean arterial pressure (MAP) of 60-65 mm Hg in all the groups.ResultsRotational thromboelastometry (ROTEM®) and conventional coagulation biomarker tests demonstrated sepsis induced derangements to secondary haemostasis. This effect was exacerbated by saline fluid resuscitation, with low pH (p = 0.036), delayed clot initiation and formation together with deficiencies in naturally occurring anti-coagulants antithrombin (p = 0.027) and Protein C (p = 0.001).ConclusionsEndotoxemia impairs secondary haemostasis and induces changes in the intrinsic, extrinsic and anti-coagulant pathways. These changes to haemostasis are exacerbated following resuscitation with 0.9% saline, a commonly used crystalloid in clinical settings.

Original publication





Thrombosis research

Publication Date





39 - 45


Critical Care Research Group, Prince Charles Hospital, Brisbane, Australia; University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia. Electronic address:


Animals, Sheep, Endotoxemia, Disease Models, Animal, Fluid Therapy, Resuscitation, Hemostasis, Blood Pressure, Female, Saline Solution