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Microbiology
Cell Biology (cytology)

What is hypertonic solution?

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October 29, 2010 4:42AM

A solution on which the concentration of solutes is greater than that of the cell that resided on the solution
In healthcare you will often hear the words iso- and hypertonic solutions. A third option the "hypotonic" solution is also a possbility.

As many people will know, the human blood contains both sodium, potassium, chloride salts. In healthcare a solution will be hypertonic when the amount of salts in it exceeds that of human blood. It will be isotonic (iso meaning "same") when the amount of salts are comparable to that of blood. Finally the solution will be considered hypotonic when the amount of salts present in the solution is less than that of blood.

Hypertonic: More concentrated

Isotonic: Just as concentrated

Hypotonic: Less as concentrated.