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Metabolic Acidosis Labs

Metabolic Acidosis - Endocrine And Metabolic Disorders - Merck Manuals Professional Edition

Metabolic Acidosis - Endocrine And Metabolic Disorders - Merck Manuals Professional Edition

(Video) Overview of Acid-Base Maps and Compensatory Mechanisms By James L. Lewis, III, MD, Attending Physician, Brookwood Baptist Health and Saint Vincent’s Ascension Health, Birmingham Metabolic acidosis is primary reduction in bicarbonate (HCO3−), typically with compensatory reduction in carbon dioxide partial pressure (Pco2); pH may be markedly low or slightly subnormal. Metabolic acidoses are categorized as high or normal anion gap based on the presence or absence of unmeasured anions in serum. Causes include accumulation of ketones and lactic acid, renal failure, and drug or toxin ingestion (high anion gap) and GI or renal HCO3− loss (normal anion gap). Symptoms and signs in severe cases include nausea and vomiting, lethargy, and hyperpnea. Diagnosis is clinical and with ABG and serum electrolyte measurement. The cause is treated; IV sodium bicarbonate may be indicated when pH is very low. Metabolic acidosis is acid accumulation due to Increased acid production or acid ingestion Acidemia (arterial pH < 7.35) results when acid load overwhelms respiratory compensation. Causes are classified by their effect on the anion gap (see The Anion Gap and see Table: Causes of Metabolic Acidosis ). Lactic acidosis (due to physiologic processes) Lactic acidosis (due to exogenous toxins) Toluene (initially high gap; subsequent excretion of metabolites normalizes gap) HIV nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors Biguanides (rare except with acute kidney injury) Normal anion gap (hyperchloremic acidosis) Renal tubular acidosis, types 1, 2, and 4 The most common causes of a high anion gap metabolic acidosis are Ketoacidosis is a common complication of type 1 diabetes mellitus (see diabetic ketoacidosis ), but it also occurs with chronic alcoholism (see alcoholic ketoacidos Continue reading >>

Metabolic Acidosis Workup

Metabolic Acidosis Workup

Approach Considerations Often the first clue to metabolic acidosis is a decreased serum HCO3- concentration observed when serum electrolytes are measured. Remember, however, that a decreased serum [HCO3-] level can be observed as a compensatory response to respiratory alkalosis. An [HCO3-] level of less than 15 mEq/L, however, almost always is due, at least in part, to metabolic acidosis. The only definitive way to diagnose metabolic acidosis is by simultaneous measurement of serum electrolytes and arterial blood gases (ABGs), which shows pH and PaCO2 to be low; calculated HCO3- also is low. (For more information, see Metabolic Alkalosis.) A low serum HCO3- and a pH of less than 7.40 upon ABG analysis confirm metabolic acidosis. Go to Pediatric Metabolic Acidosis and Emergent Management of Metabolic Acidosis for complete information on these topics. Continue reading >>

Effect Of Topiramate On Acidbase Balance: Extent, Mechanism And Effects

Effect Of Topiramate On Acidbase Balance: Extent, Mechanism And Effects

Effect of topiramate on acidbase balance: extent, mechanism and effects 1Departments of Pharmacology, The University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK 2Departments of Neurological Sciences, The University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK 1Departments of Pharmacology, The University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK 2Departments of Neurological Sciences, The University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK Professor Munir Pirmohamed, Department of Pharmacology, The University of Liverpool, Ashton Street, Liverpool L69 3GE, UK. Tel: + 44 151 794 5549 Fax: + 44 151 794 5540 E-mail: [email protected] Received 2009 Apr 2; Accepted 2009 Jul 27. Copyright Journal compilation 2009 The British Pharmacological Society This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Topiramate is licensed for the treatment of epilepsy and for migraine prophylaxis, but is also used off-licence for a wide range of indications. With the increasing use of topiramate, reports have emerged that topiramate can cause metabolic acidosis in some patients. It does this by impairing both the normal reabsorption of filtered HCO3 by the proximal renal tubule and the excretion of H+ by the distal renal tubule. This combination of defects is termed mixed renal tubular acidosis (RTA). The mechanism involves the inhibition of the enzyme carbonic anhydrase, which is consistent with the fact that genetic deficiency of carbonic anhydrase is associated with mixed RTA. Topiramate-induced RTA can make patients acutely ill, and chronically, can lead to nephrolithiasis, osteoporosis and, in children, growth retardation. There is no proven method for predicting or preventing the effect of topiramate on acidbase balance, but patients with a history of renal calculi or known RTA should not receive topiramate. The utility of regular monitoring of Continue reading >>

Metabolic Acidosis

Metabolic Acidosis

Metabolic acidosis is a condition that occurs when the body produces excessive quantities of acid or when the kidneys are not removing enough acid from the body. If unchecked, metabolic acidosis leads to acidemia, i.e., blood pH is low (less than 7.35) due to increased production of hydrogen ions by the body or the inability of the body to form bicarbonate (HCO3−) in the kidney. Its causes are diverse, and its consequences can be serious, including coma and death. Together with respiratory acidosis, it is one of the two general causes of acidemia. Terminology : Acidosis refers to a process that causes a low pH in blood and tissues. Acidemia refers specifically to a low pH in the blood. In most cases, acidosis occurs first for reasons explained below. Free hydrogen ions then diffuse into the blood, lowering the pH. Arterial blood gas analysis detects acidemia (pH lower than 7.35). When acidemia is present, acidosis is presumed. Signs and symptoms[edit] Symptoms are not specific, and diagnosis can be difficult unless the patient presents with clear indications for arterial blood gas sampling. Symptoms may include chest pain, palpitations, headache, altered mental status such as severe anxiety due to hypoxia, decreased visual acuity, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, altered appetite and weight gain, muscle weakness, bone pain, and joint pain. Those in metabolic acidosis may exhibit deep, rapid breathing called Kussmaul respirations which is classically associated with diabetic ketoacidosis. Rapid deep breaths increase the amount of carbon dioxide exhaled, thus lowering the serum carbon dioxide levels, resulting in some degree of compensation. Overcompensation via respiratory alkalosis to form an alkalemia does not occur. Extreme acidemia leads to neurological and cardia Continue reading >>

Serum Anion Gap: Its Uses And Limitations In Clinical Medicine

Serum Anion Gap: Its Uses And Limitations In Clinical Medicine

Abstract The serum anion gap, calculated from the electrolytes measured in the chemical laboratory, is defined as the sum of serum chloride and bicarbonate concentrations subtracted from the serum sodium concentration. This entity is used in the detection and analysis of acid-base disorders, assessment of quality control in the chemical laboratory, and detection of such disorders as multiple myeloma, bromide intoxication, and lithium intoxication. The normal value can vary widely, reflecting both differences in the methods that are used to measure its constituents and substantial interindividual variability. Low values most commonly indicate laboratory error or hypoalbuminemia but can denote the presence of a paraproteinemia or intoxication with lithium, bromide, or iodide. Elevated values most commonly indicate metabolic acidosis but can reflect laboratory error, metabolic alkalosis, hyperphosphatemia, or paraproteinemia. Metabolic acidosis can be divided into high anion and normal anion gap varieties, which can be present alone or concurrently. A presumed 1:1 stoichiometry between change in the serum anion gap (ΔAG) and change in the serum bicarbonate concentration (ΔHCO3−) has been used to uncover the concurrence of mixed metabolic acid-base disorders in patients with high anion gap acidosis. However, recent studies indicate variability in the ΔAG/ΔHCO3− in this disorder. This observation undercuts the ability to use this ratio alone to detect complex acid-base disorders, thus emphasizing the need to consider additional information to obtain the appropriate diagnosis. Despite these caveats, calculation of the serum anion gap remains an inexpensive and effective tool that aids detection of various acid-base disorders, hematologic malignancies, and intoxication Continue reading >>

Metabolic Acidosis

Metabolic Acidosis

Patient professional reference Professional Reference articles are written by UK doctors and are based on research evidence, UK and European Guidelines. They are designed for health professionals to use. You may find one of our health articles more useful. See also separate Lactic Acidosis and Arterial Blood Gases - Indications and Interpretations articles. Description Metabolic acidosis is defined as an arterial blood pH <7.35 with plasma bicarbonate <22 mmol/L. Respiratory compensation occurs normally immediately, unless there is respiratory pathology. Pure metabolic acidosis is a term used to describe when there is not another primary acid-base derangement - ie there is not a mixed acid-base disorder. Compensation may be partial (very early in time course, limited by other acid-base derangements, or the acidosis exceeds the maximum compensation possible) or full. The Winter formula can be helpful here - the formula allows calculation of the expected compensating pCO2: If the measured pCO2 is >expected pCO2 then additional respiratory acidosis may also be present. It is important to remember that metabolic acidosis is not a diagnosis; rather, it is a metabolic derangement that indicates underlying disease(s) as a cause. Determination of the underlying cause is the key to correcting the acidosis and administering appropriate therapy[1]. Epidemiology It is relatively common, particularly among acutely unwell/critical care patients. There are no reliable figures for its overall incidence or prevalence in the population at large. Causes of metabolic acidosis There are many causes. They can be classified according to their pathophysiological origin, as below. The table is not exhaustive but lists those that are most common or clinically important to detect. Increased acid Continue reading >>

Acid Base Disorders

Acid Base Disorders

Arterial blood gas analysis is used to determine the adequacy of oxygenation and ventilation, assess respiratory function and determine the acid–base balance. These data provide information regarding potential primary and compensatory processes that affect the body’s acid–base buffering system. Interpret the ABGs in a stepwise manner: Determine the adequacy of oxygenation (PaO2) Normal range: 80–100 mmHg (10.6–13.3 kPa) Determine pH status Normal pH range: 7.35–7.45 (H+ 35–45 nmol/L) pH <7.35: Acidosis is an abnormal process that increases the serum hydrogen ion concentration, lowers the pH and results in acidaemia. pH >7.45: Alkalosis is an abnormal process that decreases the hydrogen ion concentration and results in alkalaemia. Determine the respiratory component (PaCO2) Primary respiratory acidosis (hypoventilation) if pH <7.35 and HCO3– normal. Normal range: PaCO2 35–45 mmHg (4.7–6.0 kPa) PaCO2 >45 mmHg (> 6.0 kPa): Respiratory compensation for metabolic alkalosis if pH >7.45 and HCO3– (increased). PaCO2 <35 mmHg (4.7 kPa): Primary respiratory alkalosis (hyperventilation) if pH >7.45 and HCO3– normal. Respiratory compensation for metabolic acidosis if pH <7.35 and HCO3– (decreased). Determine the metabolic component (HCO3–) Normal HCO3– range 22–26 mmol/L HCO3 <22 mmol/L: Primary metabolic acidosis if pH <7.35. Renal compensation for respiratory alkalosis if pH >7.45. HCO3 >26 mmol/L: Primary metabolic alkalosis if pH >7.45. Renal compensation for respiratory acidosis if pH <7.35. Additional definitions Osmolar Gap Use: Screening test for detecting abnormal low MW solutes (e.g. ethanol, methanol & ethylene glycol [Reference]) An elevated osmolar gap (>10) provides indirect evidence for the presence of an abnormal solute which is prese Continue reading >>

Simple Method Of Acid Base Balance Interpretation

Simple Method Of Acid Base Balance Interpretation

A FOUR STEP METHOD FOR INTERPRETATION OF ABGS Usefulness This method is simple, easy and can be used for the majority of ABGs. It only addresses acid-base balance and considers just 3 values. pH, PaCO2 HCO3- Step 1. Use pH to determine Acidosis or Alkalosis. ph < 7.35 7.35-7.45 > 7.45 Acidosis Normal or Compensated Alkalosis Step 2. Use PaCO2 to determine respiratory effect. PaCO2 < 35 35 -45 > 45 Tends toward alkalosis Causes high pH Neutralizes low pH Normal or Compensated Tends toward acidosis Causes low pH Neutralizes high pH Step 3. Assume metabolic cause when respiratory is ruled out. You'll be right most of the time if you remember this simple table: High pH Low pH Alkalosis Acidosis High PaCO2 Low PaCO2 High PaCO2 Low PaCO2 Metabolic Respiratory Respiratory Metabolic If PaCO2 is abnormal and pH is normal, it indicates compensation. pH > 7.4 would be a compensated alkalosis. pH < 7.4 would be a compensated acidosis. These steps will make more sense if we apply them to actual ABG values. Click here to interpret some ABG values using these steps. You may want to refer back to these steps (click on "linked" steps or use "BACK" button on your browser) or print out this page for reference. Step 4. Use HC03 to verify metabolic effect Normal HCO3- is 22-26 Please note: Remember, the first three steps apply to the majority of cases, but do not take into account: the possibility of complete compensation, but those cases are usually less serious, and instances of combined respiratory and metabolic imbalance, but those cases are pretty rare. "Combined" disturbance means HCO3- alters the pH in the same direction as the PaCO2. High PaCO2 and low HCO3- (acidosis) or Low PaCO2 and high HCO3- (alkalosis). Continue reading >>

Metabolic Acidosis Nclex Review Notes

Metabolic Acidosis Nclex Review Notes

Are you studying metabolic acidosis and need to know a mnemonic on how to remember the causes? This article will give you a clever mnemonic and simplify the signs and symptoms and nursing interventions on how to remember metabolic acidosis for nursing lecture exams and NCLEX. In addition, you will learn how to differentiate metabolic acidosis from metabolic alkalosis. Don’t forget to take the metabolic acidosis and metabolic alkalosis quiz. This article will cover: Metabolic acidosis simplified Lab values expected with metabolic acidosis Causes of metabolic acidosis Signs and symptoms of metabolic acidosis Nursing interventions for metabolic acidosis Lecture on Metabolic Acidosis Metabolic Acidosis Metabolic Acidosis in Simple Terms: a metabolic problem due to the buildup of acid in the body fluids which affects the bicarbonate (HCO3 levels) either from: increased acid production (ex: DKA where ketones (acids) increase in the body which decreases bicarbonate) decreased acid excretion (ex: renal failure where there is high amount of waste left in the body which causes the acids to increase and bicarb can’t control imbalance) loss of too much bicarb (diarrhea) When this acidic phenomena is taking place in the body other systems will try to compensate to increase the bicarb back to normal. One system that tries to compensate is the respiratory system. In order to compensate, the respiratory system will cause the body to hyperventilate by increasing breathing through Kussmaul’s respirations. Kussmaul respirations are deep, rapid breathes. The body hopes this will help expel CO2 (an acid) which will “hopefully” increase the pH back to normal. Lab values expected in Metabolic Acidosis: HCO3: decreased <22 Blood pH: decreased <7.35 CO2: <35 or normal (may be normal b Continue reading >>

Ethylene Glycol Poisoning: A Rare But Life-threatening Cause Of Metabolic Acidosisa Single-centre Experience

Ethylene Glycol Poisoning: A Rare But Life-threatening Cause Of Metabolic Acidosisa Single-centre Experience

Ethylene glycol poisoning: a rare but life-threatening cause of metabolic acidosisa single-centre experience Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Nephrology, Robert-Bosch Hospital, Stuttgart, Germany Author information Article notes Copyright and License information Disclaimer Received 2011 Sep 7; Accepted 2012 Jan 17. Copyright The Author 2012. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of ERA-EDTA. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: [email protected] This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( ), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. For commercial re-use, please contact [email protected] Intoxication with ethylene glycol happen all around the world and without rapid recognition and early treatment, mortality from this is high. In our study, we retrospectively analysed six cases of ethylene glycol intoxication in our department. We measured ethylene glycol or glycolate levels, lactate levels and calculated the osmolal and anion gap. Data from six patients admitted to the nephrology department between 1999 and 2011 with ethylene glycol poisoning are reported. All patients were men. The mean pH on admission was 7.15 0.20 and the anion and osmolal gap were elevated in five of six patients. Four patients had an acute kidney injury and one patient had an acute-on-chronic kidney injury. All patients survived and after being discharged, two patients required chronic intermittent haemodialysis. Interestingly, at the time of admission, all patients had elevated lactate levels but there was no linear regression between toxic levels and lactate levels and no line Continue reading >>

Common Laboratory (lab) Values - Abgs

Common Laboratory (lab) Values - Abgs

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z Laboratory VALUES Home Page Arterial Blood Gases Arterial blood gas analysis provides information on the following: 1] Oxygenation of blood through gas exchange in the lungs. 2] Carbon dioxide (CO2) elimination through respiration. 3] Acid-base balance or imbalance in extra-cellular fluid (ECF). Normal Blood Gases Arterial Venous pH 7.35 - 7.45 7.32 - 7.42 Not a gas, but a measurement of acidity or alkalinity, based on the hydrogen (H+) ions present. The pH of a solution is equal to the negative log of the hydrogen ion concentration in that solution: pH = - log [H+]. PaO2 80 to 100 mm Hg. 28 - 48 mm Hg The partial pressure of oxygen that is dissolved in arterial blood. New Born – Acceptable range 40-70 mm Hg. Elderly: Subtract 1 mm Hg from the minimal 80 mm Hg level for every year over 60 years of age: 80 - (age- 60) (Note: up to age 90) HCO3 22 to 26 mEq/liter (21–28 mEq/L) 19 to 25 mEq/liter The calculated value of the amount of bicarbonate in the bloodstream. Not a blood gas but the anion of carbonic acid. PaCO2 35-45 mm Hg 38-52 mm Hg The amount of carbon dioxide dissolved in arterial blood. Measured. Partial pressure of arterial CO2. (Note: Large A= alveolor CO2). CO2 is called a “volatile acid” because it can combine reversibly with H2O to yield a strongly acidic H+ ion and a weak basic bicarbonate ion (HCO3 -) according to the following equation: CO2 + H2O <--- --> H+ + HCO3 B.E. –2 to +2 mEq/liter Other sources: normal reference range is between -5 to +3. The base excess indicates the amount of excess or insufficient level of bicarbonate in the system. (A negative base excess indicates a base deficit in the blood.) A negative base excess is equivalent to an acid excess. A value outside of the normal r Continue reading >>

Approach To The Adult With Metabolic Acidosis

Approach To The Adult With Metabolic Acidosis

INTRODUCTION On a typical Western diet, approximately 15,000 mmol of carbon dioxide (which can generate carbonic acid as it combines with water) and 50 to 100 mEq of nonvolatile acid (mostly sulfuric acid derived from the metabolism of sulfur-containing amino acids) are produced each day. Acid-base balance is maintained by pulmonary and renal excretion of carbon dioxide and nonvolatile acid, respectively. Renal excretion of acid involves the combination of hydrogen ions with urinary titratable acids, particularly phosphate (HPO42- + H+ —> H2PO4-), and ammonia to form ammonium (NH3 + H+ —> NH4+) [1]. The latter is the primary adaptive response since ammonia production from the metabolism of glutamine can be appropriately increased in response to an acid load [2]. Acid-base balance is usually assessed in terms of the bicarbonate-carbon dioxide buffer system: Dissolved CO2 + H2O <—> H2CO3 <—> HCO3- + H+ The ratio between these reactants can be expressed by the Henderson-Hasselbalch equation. By convention, the pKa of 6.10 is used when the dominator is the concentration of dissolved CO2, and this is proportional to the pCO2 (the actual concentration of the acid H2CO3 is very low): TI AU Garibotto G, Sofia A, Robaudo C, Saffioti S, Sala MR, Verzola D, Vettore M, Russo R, Procopio V, Deferrari G, Tessari P To evaluate the effects of chronic metabolic acidosis on protein dynamics and amino acid oxidation in the human kidney, a combination of organ isotopic ((14)C-leucine) and mass-balance techniques in 11 subjects with normal renal function undergoing venous catheterizations was used. Five of 11 studies were performed in the presence of metabolic acidosis. In subjects with normal acid-base balance, kidney protein degradation was 35% to 130% higher than protein synthesi Continue reading >>

Hyperchloremic Acidosis

Hyperchloremic Acidosis

Normal albumin-corrected anion gap acidosis Hyperchloremic acidosis is a common acid-base disturbance in critical illness, often mild (standard base excess >-10 mEq/L). Definitions of hyperchloremic acidosis vary. The best are not based on chloride concentrations, but on the presence of metabolic acidosis plus the absence of significant concentrations of lactate or other unmeasured anions. 2. standard base excess less than -3 mEq/L or bicarbonate less than 22 mmol/L, 3. Albumin corrected anion gap normal (5-15 mEq/L). A normal strong ion gap is an alternative indicator of the absence of unmeasured anions, although rarely used clinically and offering little advantage over the albumin corrected anion gap. The degree of respiratory compensation is relevant. It is appropriate if PaCO2 approximates the two numbers after arterial pH decimal point (e.g. pH=7.25, PaCO2=25 mm Hg; this rule applies to any primary metabolic acidosis down to a pH of 7.1). Acidosis is severe if standard base excess is less than -10 mEq/L, or pH is less than 7.3, or bicarbonate is less than 15 mmol/L. Common causes in critical illness are large volume saline administration, large volume colloid infusions (e.g. unbalanced gelatine or starch preparations) following resolution of diabetic keto-acidosis or of other raised anion gap acidosis, and post hypocarbia. Hyperchloremic acidosis often occurs on a background of renal impairment/tubular dysfunction. It is usually well tolerated, especially with appropriate respiratory compensation. The prognosis is largely that of the underlying condition. If associated with hyperkalemia, think of hypo-aldosteronism (Type 4 RTA), especially if diabetic. With persistent hypokalemia, think of RTA Types 1 and 2. Hyperchloremic acidosis is usually well tolerated in the Continue reading >>

Metabolic Acidosis

Metabolic Acidosis

Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA), Alcohol ic ketoacidosis or starvation ketosis Paraldehyde, Phenformin (neither used in U.S. now) Propofol Infusion Syndrome has been proposed as a replacement in mnemonic Salicylate s (do not miss Chronic Salicylate Poisoning ) IV. Causes: Metabolic Acidosis and Normal Anion Gap (Hyperchloremia) Renal Tubular Acidosis (proximal or distal) V. Causes: Metabolic Acidosis and Elevated Osmolal Gap PaCO2 drops 1.2 mmHg per 1 meq/L bicarbonate fall Calculated PaCO2 = 1.5 x HCO3 + 8 (+/- 2) Useful in High Anion Gap Metabolic Acidosis Measured PaCO2 discrepancy: respiratory disorder Investigate normal Anion Gap Metabolic Acidosis Elevated in normal Anion Gap Metabolic Acidosis VII. Labs: Consider in Metabolic Acidosis with Increased Anion Gap Basic chemistry panel as above ( Serum Glucose , Blood Urea Nitrogen ) Rutecki (Dec 1997) Consultant, p. 3067-74 Images: Related links to external sites (from Bing) These images are a random sampling from a Bing search on the term "Metabolic Acidosis." Click on the image (or right click) to open the source website in a new browser window. Search Bing for all related images Related Studies (from Trip Database) Open in New Window A condition in which the blood is too acidic. It may be caused by severe illness or sepsis (bacteria in the bloodstream). Increased acidity in the blood secondary to acid base imbalance. Causes include diabetes, kidney failure and shock. ACIDOSIS METABOLIC, metabolic acidosis, metabolic acidosis (diagnosis), Acidosis metabolic, Metabolic acidosis NOS, Metabolic Acidoses, Acidosis, Metabolic, Acidoses, Metabolic, Metabolic Acidosis, acidosis metabolic, metabolic acidosis disorder, Acidosis, Metabolic acidosis (disorder), acidosis; metabolic, metabolic; acidosis, Metabolic acidosis, NOS, M Continue reading >>

Arterial Blood Gas Analysis: Example Set 2

Arterial Blood Gas Analysis: Example Set 2

Arterial Blood Gas Analysis: Example Set 2 You are working in the emergency room when the paramedics bring in a 45 year-old man who was found down in Pioneer Square. He is somnolent but arouseable. He has emesis on his shirt. He is hypotensive and tachycardic. Labs are drawn and reveal the following: Step 2: The PCO2 is low (respiratory alkalosis) and the bicarbonate is low (metabolic acidosis). Therefore, the metabolic acidosis is the primary process. Step 3: The serum anion gap is elevated at 29. There is, therefore, an elevated anion gap acidosis. Step 4: The respiratory alkalosis is the compensatory process for the metabolic acidosis. The Delta Gap = Measured SAG Normal SAG = 29 12 = 17 Calculate the Delta Delta: Delta Gap + measured bicarbonate = 17 + 12 = 29 Since the Delta Delta is above a normal bicarbonate level, there is a concurrent metabolic alkalosis at work. The patient has a primary elevated anion gap acidosis with respiratory compensation (which is not complete) and a concurrent metabolic alkalosis. You would need to sort through the differential diagnosis for an elevated anion gap acidosis to identify the cause of that problem. The metabolic alkalosis is likely due to vomiting. A 60 year-old man was recently in the hospital for treatment of aspiration pneumonia for which he as treated with levofloxacin and clindamycin. One week later, he presents to the ER with severe diarrhea, abdominal pain and hypotension. Step 2: The PCO2 is low (respiratory alkalosis) and the bicarbonate is low (metabolic acidosis). Therefore, the metabolic acidosis is the primary process. Step 3: The serum anion gap is elevated at 20. There is, therefore, an elevated anion gap acidosis. Step 4: The respiratory alkalosis is the compensatory process for the metabolic acidosis. The Continue reading >>

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