The term "desiccosis" originally comes from Latin and is derived from the words ex = "Off" and siccus = "Dry". This actually explains the word almost by itself. Desiccosis is simply a synonym for the commonly used word "drying out" or dehydration (caution is advised here! It does not mean dehydration, as is often assumed, but dehydration The former denotes the withdrawal of hydrogen and is a technical term in chemistry or molecular physics. The latter means the withdrawal of water, which is also searched for here).

Now that we have roughly sorted the terminology, we can devote ourselves to the actual question: What is a desiccosis, how does it come about, what does it do and, above all, how harmful is it and what can be done about it?


Simply put, a desiccosis is simply the state a human body enters when it has more water, or rather liquid, losesthan is fed to him. The Dehydration dehydration and dehydration the dehydrated body and the consequences of dehydration.
Our human body is roughly made up of men 60-65 %, in women about 50-55% and in children about 60-70% of water. It is not that easy to determine the percentage of body water in body weight, as a rule it is an approximate estimate that can be calculated based on body weight, gender and age. Of course it's the so-called Body water not the kind of water that comes out of our taps and flows in streams and rivers. The body water is made up of several different fluid cycles, which are roughly divided into intracellular fluids (i.e. the fluids that are inside cells) and extracellular fluids (those that are outside cells) subdivide. The so-called Intravascular space, i.e. everything that is within Blood vessels and Lymph vessels is included in the extracellular space.
The intracellular fluids and the extracellular fluids differ from one another not only in their location, but also in theirs composition on Electrolytes, Proteins and their osmolality are different from each other. Some of the most important electrolytes in the body include sodium, potassium, Calcium and magnesium. It is extremely important that these substances are present in the body in a very specific concentration, because only then can all metabolic processes and other processes in the body run smoothly and the "human machine" can function. If, however, too much fluid is lost, the fine balance between the individual electrolytes and other trace elements can no longer be guaranteed and the most diverse symptoms occur. Important warm signs of dehydration or impending desiccosis are therefore:


thirst, a headache of any kind, a general one Feeling weak and Difficulty concentrating, dry lips, a Weight lossso-called standing skin folds (if you briefly pinch the skin in one place and pull it up, it normally returns to its original position within seconds and you can no longer see anything. However, if the body suffers from a lack of fluid, the skin lingers for a short while in the pulled up position and is slow to recover (this is a clear sign of dehydration), kidney pain and urination problems, constipation, thrombosis and a tendency to seizures. Therefore you should not underestimate a desiccosis! If it is not noticed and treated in good time, it can even become life-threatening. The medical professionals distinguish three types of dehydration: the isotonic Dehydration that hypertonic Dehydration and the hypotonic Dehydration.

Forms of dehydration

In the isotonic The body loses dehydration equally Water and salts (i.e. minerals). That usually happens through insufficient fluid intake, acute or chronic Kidney failure or vomiting and / or diarrhea.

To a hypertonic Dehydration occurs when the body loses water but no salts. This can happen with a fever, for example.

A hypotonic Dehydration occurs when the ratio of water and salts is shifted to the disadvantage of the salts, i.e. the electrolytes. This can happen if you sweat too much, for example during sport or other physical activities, and thereby the Salts with sweat and loses.


Now to the general causes such dehydration can have. As is so often the case, these can be very diverse. However, the most common cause, especially among older people and those in need of care, is simply that they drink too little. It can of course also be the case that the body loses too much fluid, for example due to a serious and unnoticed and treated organic disease. This can be the case with, for example Vomit, diarrhea, fever, Burns, in the case of improper use of Laxatives (Laxatives), too much ingestion Diuretics (Drainage drugs), larger ones Blood loss, one Diabetes mellitus or Diebetes insipidus or one Kidneys- or Adrenal insufficiency (Kidney or adrenal weakness). Extreme heat and physical exertion and the associated increased sweat production also lead to the loss of salts and thus dehydration.
At the beginning, as a healthy person, you can usually recognize an impending lack of fluids very simply: you get thirst. What may sound normal and taken for granted, may not be so for some. Because in some people the natural sense of thirst is limited or completely absent, especially in older people this can often be observed. In addition to thirst, latent headaches, lack of concentration to the point of drowsiness and a general feeling of weakness can give the first indications of desiccosis. Depending on what causes this, you can also eye bags, dry skin and dry mucous membranes, nausea, cramps and even fever occur. The effects of desiccosis vary and depend on whether it is isotonic, hypertonic, or hypotonic.
In the majority of cases, the doctor can quickly see what caused the fluid loss, for example in the case of diarrhea and vomiting, extreme heat or blood loss.If this is not the case, however, a more thorough examination of the individual organs must be carried out in order to be able to determine any kidney damage or metabolic imbalance.

Therapy of desiccosis

The most important measure in the case of a desiccosis is the rapid supply of fluids, such as via an infusion.

However, it is relatively independent of the exact cause of the dehydration treatment.

Here it applies in every case, the threatening or already manifest Compensate for lack of fluids, for your water- and Electrolyte balance to bring it back into balance. It is best then too mineral drinks like mineral water, juice spritzers, brewed herb or fruit teas or broths and to drink a lot of them and sip them. If the dehydration has progressed further and a patient is already showing very clear signs of desiccosis such as a clouding of consciousness, it may be necessary to call a doctor to give the person affected infusion and can thus ensure a quick administration of both fluids and electrolytes (minerals). This is usually a mixture of Sodium chloride or one Glucose solution used. In the geriatric service, i.e. for older and very old patients, there is sometimes a subcutaneous Infusion chosen; this is the infusion needle directly under the Skin laid. Here it is of particular importance to assess the underlying disease and, if necessary, treat it, as it could be, for example, that the desiccosis was caused by an unfavorable combination of drugs.
Is it a metabolic imbalance in an existing one? Diabetes mellitus, so here, too, the first thing to do is to balance the fluid balance and Compensate for electrolyte deficienciesbefore the actual underlying disease can be treated later. If there is a severe lack of fluids for a longer period of time, caution should be exercised when "refilling" the fluid depots, as rehabilitation (apparently) too fast, leading to cerebral formation Edema (i.e. fluid accumulation in and on the brain).

A relatively simple measure to prevent such a fatal course of desiccosis is to consume a lot of fruit, vegetables and other high-fiber and pectin-containing foods. Thanks to their constituents, these bind the water longer and are thus able to gradually release it to the human body via the intestines and thus counteract and prevent dehydration.