BACK TOTOP Browse A-ZSearchBrowse A-ZABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ0-9 E-mail FormEmail ResultsName:Email address:Recipients Name:Recipients address:Message: Print-FriendlyBookmarksbookmarks-menuSkin turgorDoughy skin; Poor skin turgor; Good skin turgor; Decreased skin turgorSkin turgor is the skin's elasticity. It is the ability of skin to change shape and return to normal. Considerations Skin turgor is a sign of fluid loss (dehydration). Diarrhea or vomiting can cause fluid loss. Infants and young children with these conditions can rapidly lose a lot of fluid, if they do not take enough water. Fever speeds up this process.DehydrationDehydration occurs when your body does not have as much water and fluids as it needs. Dehydration can be mild, moderate, or severe, based on how much...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article To check for skin turgor, the health care provider grasps the skin between two fingers so that it is tented up. Commonly on the lower arm or abdomen is checked. The skin is held for a few seconds then released.Skin with normal turgor snaps rapidly back to its normal position. Skin with poor turgor takes time to return to its normal position.Lack of skin turgor occurs with moderate to severe fluid loss. Mild dehydration is when fluid loss equals 5% of body weight. Moderate dehydration is 10% loss and severe dehydration is 15% or more loss of body weight.Edema is a condition where fluid builds up in the tissues and causes swelling. This causes the skin to be extremely difficult to pinch up.EdemaSwelling is the enlargement of organs, skin, or other body parts. It is caused by a buildup of fluid in the tissues. The extra fluid can lead to a ...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Causes Common causes of poor skin turgor are:Decreased fluid intake Dehydration DehydrationDehydration occurs when your body does not have as much water and fluids as it needs. Dehydration can be mild, moderate, or severe, based on how much...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Diarrhea Diabetes DiabetesDiabetes is a long-term (chronic) disease in which the body cannot regulate the amount of sugar in the blood.ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Extreme weight loss Heat exhaustion (excessive sweating without enough fluid intake) Heat exhaustionHeat emergencies or illnesses are caused by exposure to extreme heat and sun. Heat illnesses can be prevented by being careful in hot, humid weather...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Vomiting Connective tissue disorders such as scleroderma and Ehlers-Danlos syndrome can affect the elasticity of the skin, but this is not related to the amount of fluid in the body. SclerodermaScleroderma is a disease that involves the buildup of scar-like tissue in the skin and elsewhere in the body. It also damages the cells that line th...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Ehlers-Danlos syndromeEhlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS) is a group of inherited disorders marked by extremely loose joints, very stretchy (hyperelastic) skin that bruises easil...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Home Care You can quickly check for dehydration at home. Pinch the skin over the back of the hand, on the abdomen, or over the front of the chest under the collarbone. This will show skin turgor.Mild dehydration will cause the skin to be slightly slow in its return to normal. To rehydrate, drink more fluids -- particularly water.Severe turgor indicates moderate or severe fluid loss. See your provider right away. When to Contact a Medical Professional Contact your provider if:Poor skin turgor occurs with vomiting, diarrhea, or fever. The skin is very slow to return to normal, or the skin "tents" up during a check. This can indicate severe dehydration that needs quick treatment. You have reduced skin turgor and are unable to increase your intake of fluids (for example, because of vomiting). What to Expect at Your Office Visit The provider will perform a physical exam and ask questions about your medical history, including:How long have you had symptoms? What other symptoms came before the change in skin turgor (vomiting, diarrhea, others)? What have you done to try to treat the condition? Are there things that make the condition better or worse? What other symptoms do you have (such as dry lips, decreased urine output, and decreased tearing)? Decreased urine outputDecreased urine output means that you produce less urine than normal. Most adults make at least 500 mL of urine in 24 hours (a little over 2 cups)....ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Decreased tearingYou need tears to moisten the eyes and to wash away particles that have gotten into your eyes. A healthy tear film on the eye is necessary for good ...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Tests that may be performed:Blood chemistry (such as a chem-20) Blood chemistryA comprehensive metabolic panel is a group of blood tests. They provide an overall picture of your body's chemical balance and metabolism. Metaboli...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Chem-20A comprehensive metabolic panel is a group of blood tests. They provide an overall picture of your body's chemical balance and metabolism. Metaboli...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article CBC CBCA complete blood count (CBC) test measures the following:The number of red blood cells (RBC count)The number of white blood cells (WBC count)The tota...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article UrinalysisUrinalysisUrinalysis is the physical, chemical, and microscopic examination of urine. It involves a number of tests to detect and measure various compounds th...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article You may need intravenous fluids for severe fluid loss. You may need medicines to treat other causes of poor skin turgor and elasticity.IntravenousIntravenous means "within a vein. " Most often it refers to giving medicines or fluids through a needle or tube inserted into a vein. This allows th...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Open ReferencesReferencesBall JW, Dains JE, Flynn JA, Solomon BS, Stewart RW. Skin, hair, and nails. In: Ball JW, Dains JE, Flynn JA, Solomon BS, Stewart RW, eds. Seidel's Guide to Physical Examination. 10th ed. St Louis, MO: Elsevier; 2023:chap 9.Greenbaum LA. Deficit therapy. In: Kliegman RM, St. Geme JW, Blum NJ, Shah SS, Tasker RC, Wilson KM, eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 21st ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 70.McGrath JL, Bachmann DJ. Vital signs measurement. In: Roberts JR, Custalow CB, Thomsen TW, eds. Roberts and Hedges' Clinical Procedures in Emergency Medicine and Acute Care. 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2019:chap 1.Van Mater HA, Rabinovich CE. Scleroderma and Raynaud phenomenon. In: Kliegman RM, St. Geme JW, Blum NJ, Shah SS, Tasker RC, Wilson KM, eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 21st ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 185.AllVideoImagesTogSkin turgor - illustration A decrease in skin turgor is indicated when the skin (on the back of the hand for an adult or on the abdomen for a child) is pulled up for a few seconds and does not return to its original state. A decrease in skin turgor is a late sign of dehydration.Skin turgorillustrationSkin turgor - illustration A decrease in skin turgor is indicated when the skin (on the back of the hand for an adult or on the abdomen for a child) is pulled up for a few seconds and does not return to its original state. A decrease in skin turgor is a late sign of dehydration.Skin turgorillustrationRelated Information Dehydration(Condition)Swelling(Symptoms) Review Date: 1/29/2022 Reviewed By: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team. The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- © 1997- All rights reserved. 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