Mannitol is an osmotic diuretic. It has a variety of uses. It is used to prevent and treat the low output of urine associated with kidney failure. It is also used to reduce elevated pressure in the brain (cerebral oedema) and in the eyes. Mannitol also promotes the excretion of substances such as aspirin and barbiturates in overdose situations.
Mannitol infusion may occasionally be prescribed by the ophthalmology team as part of the treatment to reduce intra-ocular pressure. A single infusion should be prescribed and a maximum of 2 doses only should be administered before triggering a Consultant Ophthalmologist review.
Mannitol must always be prescribed on the "STAT/ONCE ONLY" side of the prescription chart and patients must be initiated on a strict fluid balance chart due to its potent diuretic effects; patients must be monitored daily.
Patients prescribed additional diuretics are at even greater risk of acute kidney injury (AKI) and require closer monitoring.