Differential Diagnosis and Treatment of Acidosis

  • H. P. Povoas
  • M. H. Weil
Conference paper


Acidosis may be associated with unrelated disease states and differing mechanisms. Metabolic production of organic acids, respiratory retention of carbon dioxide or renal loss of bicarbonate represent changes in which [H+] of fluids in both extracellular and intracellular compartments may be increased. Excesses of acids and deficits of bicarbonate are defined as metabolic acid base defects and increases or decreases in the CO2 tension of blood (and tissues) are defined as respiratory acidosis. An important exception is now recognized. During tissue ischaemia, excesses of tissue CO2 are generated [1]. The resulting hypercarbic tissue acidosis due to tissue hypoxia is therefore a metabolic defect rather than respiratory CO2 retention [2, 3, 4, 5].


Lactic Acidosis Sodium Bicarbonate Diabetic Ketoacidosis Renal Tubular Acidosis Respiratory Acidosis 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Italia 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • H. P. Povoas
    • 1
  • M. H. Weil
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute of Critical Care MedicinePalm SpringsUSA
  2. 2.The University of Southern California School of MedicineLos AngelesUSA

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