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Hypertonic Solution vs. Hypotonic Solution — What's the Difference?

By Tayyaba Rehman — Published on December 6, 2023
A Hypertonic Solution has a higher solute concentration than inside a cell, causing water to move out; a Hypotonic Solution has a lower solute concentration, causing water to move in.
Hypertonic Solution vs. Hypotonic Solution — What's the Difference?

Difference Between Hypertonic Solution and Hypotonic Solution

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Key Differences

A Hypertonic Solution possesses a greater concentration of solutes outside the cell than inside, resulting in water moving out of the cell to balance the concentration. In contrast, a Hypotonic Solution has a lower concentration of solutes outside the cell, causing water to flow into the cell.
Tayyaba Rehman
Dec 06, 2023
When a cell is immersed in a Hypertonic Solution, it loses water and may become shriveled. On the other hand, when a cell is in a Hypotonic Solution, it gains water, which might lead the cell to swell or even burst.
Tayyaba Rehman
Dec 06, 2023
It's crucial in medical practices to understand the nature of the solution being used. A Hypertonic Solution might be employed to treat cellular swelling, while a Hypotonic Solution can rehydrate cells.
Tayyaba Rehman
Dec 06, 2023
The effects of these solutions play a vital role in maintaining homeostasis in living organisms. Hypertonic Solutions can lead to dehydration in cells, while Hypotonic Solutions can ensure cells receive necessary hydration, but excessive water can be detrimental.
Tayyaba Rehman
Dec 06, 2023
In the realm of osmosis, the Hypertonic Solution serves as a region of high solute concentration, causing water molecules to move out of the cell. Simultaneously, the Hypotonic Solution acts as a region of low solute concentration, prompting water molecules to move into the cell.
Tayyaba Rehman
Dec 06, 2023
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Comparison Chart

Solute Concentration

Higher than inside the cell.
Lower than inside the cell.
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Dec 06, 2023

Effect on Cells

Causes cells to lose water and shrivel.
Causes cells to gain water and swell.
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Dec 06, 2023

Water Movement

Water moves out of the cell.
Water moves into the cell.
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Dec 06, 2023

Usage in Medical Treatments

Often used to treat cellular swelling.
Used to rehydrate cells.
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Dec 06, 2023

Relation to Osmosis

Region of high solute concentration.
Region of low solute concentration.
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Dec 06, 2023

Compare with Definitions

Hypertonic Solution

A solution with elevated solute concentration.
To reduce the swelling, the nurse used a Hypertonic Solution.
Tayyaba Rehman
Oct 20, 2023

Hypotonic Solution

A solution lesser in solute concentration than inside cells.
Hydration of cells is a common effect of a Hypotonic Solution.
Tayyaba Rehman
Oct 20, 2023

Hypertonic Solution

A solution that leads to cellular dehydration.
He understood that the Hypertonic Solution would extract water from the cells.
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Oct 20, 2023

Hypotonic Solution

A solution prompting water to enter cells.
When placed in a Hypotonic Solution, cells are at risk of bursting.
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Oct 20, 2023

Hypertonic Solution

A medium prompting water to exit cells for osmotic balance.
Osmotic pressure is elevated in a Hypertonic Solution, driving water outward.
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Oct 20, 2023

Hypotonic Solution

A solution leading to cellular hydration.
To hydrate the patient's cells, a Hypotonic Solution was administered.
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Oct 20, 2023

Hypertonic Solution

A solution greater in solute concentration than inside cells.
Dehydration can be a result of prolonged exposure to a Hypertonic Solution.
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Oct 20, 2023

Hypotonic Solution

A solution with diminished solute concentration.
The Hypotonic Solution caused the cells to expand as they absorbed water.
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Oct 20, 2023

Hypertonic Solution

A solution causing water to move out of cells.
Cells immersed in a Hypertonic Solution typically shrivel.
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Oct 20, 2023

Hypotonic Solution

A medium urging water to penetrate cells for osmotic balance.
In a Hypotonic Solution, osmotic pressure drives water into the cell.
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Oct 20, 2023

Common Curiosities

What happens to cells in a Hypertonic Solution?

In a Hypertonic Solution, cells lose water and tend to shrivel.
Tayyaba Rehman
Dec 06, 2023

How does a Hypotonic Solution affect cells?

In a Hypotonic Solution, cells gain water and may swell or burst.
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Dec 06, 2023

How do plant cells respond differently than animal cells in a Hypotonic Solution?

Plant cells swell in a Hypotonic Solution but have a rigid cell wall that prevents bursting, unlike animal cells.
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Dec 06, 2023

Why is understanding the nature of these solutions vital in medicine?

Because Hypertonic Solutions can treat cell swelling, and Hypotonic Solutions can rehydrate cells, affecting treatment outcomes.
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Dec 06, 2023

Why do cells shrivel in a Hypertonic Solution?

Because water moves out of the cell to balance the high solute concentration outside.
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Dec 06, 2023

Are there risks associated with using a Hypotonic Solution?

Yes, excessive use of a Hypotonic Solution can cause cells to burst.
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Dec 06, 2023

Which solution is used to combat cellular dehydration?

A Hypotonic Solution is used to counteract cellular dehydration.
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Dec 06, 2023

Do these solutions have an effect on osmotic balance?

Yes, Hypertonic Solutions drive water out, and Hypotonic Solutions drive water into cells, affecting osmotic balance.
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Dec 06, 2023

Can prolonged exposure to a Hypertonic Solution harm cells?

Yes, prolonged exposure to a Hypertonic Solution can cause cells to dehydrate and become damaged.
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Dec 06, 2023

How do these solutions maintain homeostasis in organisms?

Hypertonic Solutions can counteract cell swelling, and Hypotonic Solutions can counteract cell dehydration, balancing cellular environments.
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Dec 06, 2023

What is the primary movement of water in a Hypotonic Solution?

In a Hypotonic Solution, water primarily moves into the cell.
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Dec 06, 2023

How do red blood cells react in a Hypotonic Solution?

In a Hypotonic Solution, red blood cells can swell and potentially lyse or burst.
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Dec 06, 2023

Which solution can lead to cellular dehydration?

A Hypertonic Solution can lead to cellular dehydration.
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Dec 06, 2023

Can these solutions affect osmotic pressure?

Yes, Hypertonic Solutions increase and Hypotonic Solutions decrease osmotic pressure.
Tayyaba Rehman
Dec 06, 2023

What’s the key difference in solute concentration between the two?

Hypertonic Solutions have higher solute concentrations than cells, while Hypotonic Solutions have lower solute concentrations.
Tayyaba Rehman
Dec 06, 2023

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Author Spotlight

Written by
Tayyaba Rehman
Tayyaba Rehman is a distinguished writer, currently serving as a primary contributor to askdifference.com. As a researcher in semantics and etymology, Tayyaba's passion for the complexity of languages and their distinctions has found a perfect home on the platform. Tayyaba delves into the intricacies of language, distinguishing between commonly confused words and phrases, thereby providing clarity for readers worldwide.

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