A Cell’S Interior Is Considered Isotonic To The Surrounding Fluid When?
- Joe Thomas
The solute concentrations within and outside the cell are same. When osmosis occurs, the inside of a cell is considered isotonic to the surrounding fluid.
How is a cell rendered isotonic?
If the solute concentration outside and within the cell is same and the solutes cannot enter the cell membrane, then the solution is isotonic for the cell.
What does it mean for a cell to be isotonic with its surroundings?
Isotonic Solution – A cell in an isotonic solution is in equilibrium with its environment, meaning that the solute concentrations within and outside the cell are identical ( iso means equal in Latin). In this condition, there is no concentration gradient, hence there is no significant influx or efflux of water.
Blood Cells – When the plasma surrounding blood cells is an isotonic solution, the cells operate normally. The isotonic solution permits the cells to import and export water and nutrients. This is essential for blood cells to fulfill their role of transporting oxygen and other nutrients to other regions of the body.
- If the cells are in a hypertonic environment, they will be plasmolyzed and lack sufficient water to carry out their duties.
- In a hypotonic environment, cells will lyse and release their contents into the circulation.
- This can result in serious side effects as well as blood cell loss.
- These events are depicted in the graphic that follows.
To prevent either of these adverse outcomes from occurring during the transfusion of nutrients and medication, the solution used to transport the medication must be isotonic relative to the patient’s blood. Using particular salts and sugars that function as solutes to dilute or concentrate a drug, the osmolarity of the intravenous fluid may be controlled.