The acid-base balance is an important parameter that is maintained in the human blood within certain limits. This is necessary for the normal functioning of various body systems, biochemical reactions, and the optimal functioning of enzymes. The body’s acid-base state includes three main mechanisms: the functioning of extracellular and intracellular buffer systems; respiratory regulation mechanisms; the renal mechanism (Hopkins et al., 2020). Disorders of the acid-base state – pathological reactions associated with a violation of the acid-base state, namely acidosis and alkalosis. Further in the paper, acidosis and its characteristics will be discussed.
Acidosis can be caused by the increased acid formation in the body, the intake of substances that can be metabolized to acids, a decrease in acid excretion, or, conversely, an increase in base loss (Sullivan, 2017). A pH deviation below 7.35 indicates acidosis. Acidosis may not be accompanied by any symptoms or may be accompanied by non-specific symptoms, such as fatigue, nausea, and vomiting (Hopkins et al., 2020). Acute acidosis can also cause rapid and deep breathing, confusion, and headache, drop in blood pressure and can lead to unconsciousness, coma, and, in some cases, death. Variants of violation of the acid-base state include the following conditions:
- primary respiratory acidosis associated with an increase in PaCO2
- metabolic acidosis caused by a decrease in the concentration of HCO3~
Tests used to identify, evaluate, and monitor acid-base imbalances are blood gases and analysis for electrolytes. Treatment of disorders of the acid-base balance in the blood is aimed at treating the underlying disease, which led to acidosis development (Sullivan, 2017). To normalize the pH level, intravenous administration of acid-neutralizing solutions can be performed for acidosis (Burger & Schaller, 2020). Treatment of respiratory acidosis aims to restore the rhythm and depth of breathing with the possible transfer of the patient to artificial ventilation (breathing with a special device in cases of ineffective lung activity).
One clarifying question about a topic is the following: Which of the two saturated and unsaturated hydrocarbons is more reactive and why?
Burger, M.K. & Schaller, D.J. (2020). Metabolic Acidosis. StatPearls Publishing. Web.
Hopkins, E., Sanvictores, T., Sharma, S. (2020). Physiology, Acid-base balance. StatPearls Publishing. Web.
Sullivan, D. (2017). Acid-base balance. Healthline. Web.