1. The effects of streptozotocin-diabetes on the local and general responses to a 4 h period of bilateral hind-limb ischaemia in the rat have been investigated. The rats were injured 48 h after the intravenous injection of the streptozotocin.
2. Less fluid was lost from the circulation into the injured limbs after injury in the diabetic rats and this was directly related to the severity of the diabetes, but could not be explained by dehydration. However, when the diabetic and non-diabetic injured rats were considered together there was a significant negative correlation between either plasma osmolality or plasma glucose concentration and water content in the injured hind limb.
3. The relationship between plasma glucose concentration and plasma osmolality was changed by injury such that, particularly in the injured diabetic rats, plasma osmolality at a given glucose concentration was higher than that predicted from the relationship between these variables in the uninjured rat.