Biology Forum Human Biology dangers of acidosis and alkalosis in the blood

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    • #899

      what are all the dangers of acidosis and alkalosis in the blood? any help will be well appreciated

    • #22463

      The acid/base status of the body (pH) is regulated by the kidneys and the lungs. Acidosis is caused by an accumulation of acid or a significant loss of bicarbonate. The major categories of acidosis are respiratory acidosis and metabolic acidosis.
      The human body is programmed to correct for either respiratory or metabolic acidosis to maintain normal pH. For example, if the acidosis was caused by excessive carbon dioxide (which is an acid) the body will correct the pH by retaining bicarbonate (a base).
      Respiratory acidosis develops when there are excessive amounts of carbon dioxide in the body, primarily caused by decreased breathing. Other names for this include hypercapnic acidosis and carbon dioxide acidosis.
      There are several types of metabolic acidosis. Diabetic acidosis (also called diabetic ketoacidosis and DKA) develops when ketone bodies accumulate during uncontrolled diabetes.
      Hyperchloremic acidosis results from excessive loss of sodium bicarbonate from the body, as in severe diarrhea, for example.
      Lactic acidosis is an accumulation of lactic acid. This can be caused by many conditions, including prolonged lack of oxygen (from, for example, shock, heart failure, or severe anemia), prolonged exercise, seizures, hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), alcohol, liver failure, malignancy, or certain medications like salicylates.
      Other causes of metabolic acidosis include severe dehydration — resulting in decreased tissue perfusion (decreased blood flow), kidney disease (see distal renal tubular acidosis and proximal renal tubular acidosis), and other metabolic diseases.


      Alkalosis is a condition of excess base (alkali) in the body fluids. This is the opposite of excess acid (acidosis), and can be caused by many different conditions.

      Causes, incidence, and risk factors

      The lungs and kidneys regulate the acid/base status of the body. Decreased carbon dioxide or increased bicarbonate levels create an excessive alkaline state called alkalosis.
      Respiratory alkalosis is caused by lower carbon dioxide levels. Hyperventilation (increased rate of breathing) causes the body to lose carbon dioxide. Altitude or a disease that causes reduced oxygen in the blood triggers the individual to breathe faster. This reduces carbon dioxide levels which results in respiratory alkalosis.
      Metabolic alkalosis is caused by an excess of bicarbonate in blood. Hypochloremic alkalosis is caused by an extreme lack or loss of chloride, such as may be caused by prolonged vomiting. The kidneys compensate for the chloride loss by conserving bicarbonate.
      Hypokalemic alkalosis is caused by the kidneys’ reaction to an extreme lack or loss of potassium which may be caused by some diuretic medications.
      Compensated alkalosis is caused when the body has partially compensated for alkalosis, returning the acid/base balance to normal, even though bicarbonate and carbon dioxide levels remain abnormal.


      * Confusion (can progress to stupor or coma)
      * Muscle twitching
      * Hand tremor
      * Prolonged muscle spasms (tetany)
      * Nausea, vomiting
      * Numbness or tingling in the face or extremities
      * Light-headedness

      Signs and tests

      * Tests for pH indicate alkalosis or acidosis.
      * Tests for carbon dioxide and bicarbonate levels indicate the cause of alkalosis or acidosis, either respiratory (breathing-related) or metabolic (kidney-related).

      Some of these tests include:

      * Arterial blood gas (or venous blood gas)
      * Urinalysis
      * Litmus paper (urine dipstick tests)
      * Urine pH
      * Chem-20

      Treatment of alkalosis depends on finding the specific cause. For alkalosis caused by hyperventilation, breathing into a paper bag causes more carbon dioxide to be retained. Oxygen may be administered.
      Medications to correct chemical loss (chloride, potassium, etc.) may be needed. Vital signs (temperature, pulse, rate of breathing, blood pressure) are monitored.
      Most cases of alkalosis respond well to treatment.

      * Coma
      * Arrhythmias
      * Electrolyte imbalance (such as hypokalemia)

    • #22605

      thanks for the help and ok

    • #24445

      For the past 8 years I have not been feeling very well. Chronic fatique, weakness, overweight, went to the doctor she ran blood work and found nothing, she insisted that I was depressed and needed to be put on medication. I refused. went to her again half a dozen times with the same complaints, she again suggested depression, out of desperation I conceded and took zoloft for a few months, with no relief, she suggested we try other meds, but I refused. I shared other symptoms with her, but after awhile she just looked at me as if I were fabricating them or overreacting, I even started to think that perhaps I was a bit of a hypochondriac, and just stopped going. Other symptoms included an ammonia smell in my nose and bumps that grew on my tongue and gums. Even my dentist didn’t offer any diagnosis but did offer to remove them for $300. I searched the internet for my symptoms and came up with a few probabilities but I was not presenting some of the symptoms or problems associated with them and they seemed a little far fetched. One thing kept bothering me, it was alkaline, I came across some information that talked about PH balance and I figured until I found out what I had I should make sure that my body is alkaline to ward off any disease or cancer that may be present. I bought 3 books and a PH kit. The next morning I tested my urine and was shocked to discover that I was extremely acidic. As I read the books I came across information regarding the body dumping ammonia into the blood stream to try to correct the acidity, it all finally made perfect sense to me, I had almost all of the symptoms for acidosis and alkalosis, I started drinking water with 2 tsp of raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar, that same day I tested my urine and was pleased to see it turn green, it was almost in the normal range. This morning however when I tested I was again very acidic, and I became concerned. My next step now is to find a doctor who will be able to properly diagnose and treat me. Does anyone out there have information regarding this condition that would help me understand it better, I’m interested in websites or books that can help me prepare foods that will help my body heal itself, and any other info that you think I would benefit in knowing. Thank you very much.

    • #24532

      I advise you to consult a specialist in the field. Don’t go to a general practitioner, because they are sometimes wrong(at least in my country). Go directly to a doctor that deals with this kind of problems on a daily basis. He should be able to hep you

    • #24535
      quote MrMistery:

      I advise you to consult a specialist in the field. Don’t go to a general practitioner, because they are sometimes wrong(at least in my country). Go directly to a doctor that deals with this kind of problems on a daily basis. He should be able to hep you

      It’s the job of the general practitioner to be able to tell the patient exactly which specialist would be best. Ask their advice before seeing anyone.

    • #24540

      Haha… So all the GP does is dirrect you to other doctors? Must be a fun job 😉

    • #24543
      quote MrMistery:

      Haha… So all the GP does is dirrect you to other doctors? Must be a fun job 😉

      No….being a GP is one of my potential paths to follow when I get to med school. What they do is do everything they can to “fix” the patient, then if that’s not enough, they tell the patient where to go to get more help.

      It’s just like any doctor. GP is best described as “jack of all trades, master of none.”

    • #26068
      Catriona Waldron

      I hope you have by now found some competent medical help. The symptoms of fatigue, being overweight and weakness combined with alkalosis may be consistent with Cushings disease, caused by the overproduction of cortisol. You must be persistent about getting your symptoms investigated. This is a classic pattern of undiagnosed illness, repeated visits to the General Practitioner and resorting to antidepressants. Cushings can cause depression and the exaggeration of emotions; undiagnosed illness and repeated visits to useless GPs can also cause depression!

    • #26099

      Sounds like an M.D. and not a D.O. No offense meant, but an M.D. usually only treats symptoms without treating the problem such as prescribing anti-depressants all the time. A D.O. doesn’t do this (in 3/4 of the cases anyway), instead they try to treat the actual illness instead.

    • #26105

      A general practitioner is an MD.

    • #27731

      i have been in the field of Traditional Chinese Med for 17 years
      i suggest that you consult a practitioner (MD)of TCM.
      Find one that has been taught in Japan and from Japan
      One that recognises the balance of yin and yang and understands the harmony of ones nature. This is where you WILL find your cure. To remember that it will not be a simple road and most likely one that will not have a fun flavor. However it WILL be your only true cure to not cause harm to any other member of your internal or external body.

    • #27751

      No, a general practitioner can be either a D.O. or an M.D. guys. There’s no difference in the degree except for the method of approach to treatment.

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