Respiratory alkalosis Definition
Respiratory alkalosis is a condition marked by low levels of carbon dioxide in the blood due to breathing excessively.
Alkalosis - respiratory
Causes, incidence, and risk factors
Common causes include:
Any lung disease that leads to shortness of breath can also cause respiratory alkalosis.
The symptoms may include:
Numbness of the hands and feet Signs and tests
The health care provider will perform a physical exam. Tests that may be done include:
Treatment is aimed at the condition that causes respiratory alkalosis. Breathing into a paper bag -- or using a mask that causes you to re-breathe carbon dioxide -- sometimes helps reduce symptoms.
What will happen depends on the condition that is causing the respiratory alkalosis.
Seizures may occur if the alkalosis is extremely severe. This is very rare.
Calling your health care provider
Call your health care provider if you have any symptoms of lung disease, such as chronic cough or shortness of breath.
Seifter JL. Acid-base disorders. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds.
Cecil Medicine. 24th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2011:chap 120.
David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
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