Intro to Arterial Blood Gases & Pulmonary Physiology ress 141

Identify the characteristics of acids and bases
Identify the electrolytes commonly measured in the blood serum such as sodium, bicarbonate, chloride and potassium and their effect on homeostasis

In order for the human body to grow and function effectively, it needs to be able to maintain a constant state of well-being. This condition is referred to as homeostasis. Homeostasis requires that an organism’s internal environment remains constant and therefore will resist changes that may occur. Cellular function depends on chemical and enzymatic processes, which must efficiently take place within the cells and tissues. These processes require homeostasis. The environment that surrounds these processes must remain in balance or the chemical reactions will not occur properly, and the physiologic processes will suffer. An inability to maintain homeostasis can result in sickness, disease, or death.

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Take for example oxygen, carbon dioxide, and dissolved food. These chemicals move in or out of cells by diffusion. Another chemical that relies on homeostasis to move in or out of cells is glucose. Diffusion defects can occur anywhere in the body but as respiratory therapists, we worry about pulmonary diffusion defects because this deficiency affects pulmonary gas exchange resulting in hypoxemia, a low concentration of oxygen in the blood.

One of the most important components of the chemical environment is the pH or acid-base balance of the surrounding fluids that take part in cellular metabolism and organ function. Acids and bases are found extensively throughout the human body and require buffer systems to keep them at acceptable levels. This proper level of acids and bases is referred to as the pH. The pH is used to measure how well the body is maintaining homeostasis.

Prompt

In your own words, provide detailed responses to the following:
Explain the primary goal of acid-base balance in terms of homeostasis.
Identify the two organ systems that are responsible for acid-base balance and explain how they specifically maintain this balance.
In detail describe how you would know that an ABG result was a) an acute respiratory acidosis and b) a metabolic acidosis. Include a medical condition that can cause each.
Explain the specific meaning of the following terms as they relate to ABG physiology:
Ventilation
Diffusion
External Respiration
Internal Respiration

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