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Last Updated: Mar 20, 2020
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Acidosis - Types, Causes, Symptoms, Treatment And Prevention

About Types Symptoms Causes Treatment Treatment Prevent What foods cause acidosis? Risk factors

What is Acidosis?

Too much of acidic condition in the body fluids causes acidosis. It occurs basically when your organs fail to maintain the body Ph level. The imbalances in the pH level lead to the storage of acid in the body.

What are the types of acidosis?

There are two types of acidosis i.e. respiratory acidosis and metabolic acidosis.

Respiratory acidosis

It is the condition in which the lungs are not able to remove carbon dioxide from the body due to which there is an increase in CO2 and this causes increases in the level of pH of the blood and other remaining fluids of the body decreases while making them too acidic. Again it is sub-classified into two categories i.e Acute respiratory acidosis and Chronic respiratory acidosis.

  • Acute respiratory acidosis is a medical emergency which occurs quickly and if the conditions become worse then it can be life-threatening.
  • Chronic respiratory acidosis is a medical condition which develops over time and there are no symptoms but the body starts adapting to the increased level of acidity.

Metabolic acidosis

It occurs when there is a chemical imbalance of acids and bases in your blood and the body starts making too much acid and does not have enough amount of base bring acid to a normal level. There are three types of metabolic acidosis: Diabetic acidosis, hyperchloremic acidosis, and lactic acidosis.

  • Diabetic acidosis is a serious condition of diabetes and occurs when there is a production of the level of ketones and the body reaches this level when enough insulin is not produced by the body.
  • Hyperchloremic acidosis is another form of metabolic acidosis and associated with a normal anion gap.
  • Lactic acidosis is a condition in which there is a formation of lactate in the body and the pH level becomes low in the bloodstream. There is an accumulation of acid as there is a problem with the body’s oxidative metabolism.

What are the symptoms of acidosis?

Respiratory acidosis Symptoms

  • Fatigue
  • Drowsiness
  • Confusion
  • Shortness in breathing
  • Headache
  • Becoming tired easily
  • Sleepiness

Metabolic acidosis symptoms

  • Shallow and rapid breathing
  • Jaundice
  • Fast heart rate
  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Confusion
  • Sleepiness

What are the causes of acidosis?

Respiratory acidosis causes

  • Injury to the chest
  • Obesity
  • Sedative misuse
  • Overuse of alcohol
  • Weakness in the chest muscles
  • Damage in the nervous system
  • Deformation in the structure of the chest
  • Asthma

Metabolic acidosis causes

What is the best treatment for acidosis?

Treatment of acidosis is important to avoid further complications. Higher the PH of blood by administering sodium bicarbonate through medicines or intravenously is the first method of treatment. This brings in a normal PH balance in the blood. Normally patients recover from acidosis to lead a normal life. They need to be extra careful if they have diabetes or asthma and prevent the occurrence of acidosis. People who have healthy lungs and kidneys suffer from mild acidosis which can be easily cured.

What are the treatment effects of acidosis?

There are many strong and causal relationships between acidosis and many other diseases and these diseases include:

  • Osteoporosis: Dietary acidosis causes the reduction in the bone density leading to bone fractures, osteoporosis. This effect is predominant in pre- and post-menopausal women more often.
  • Kidney stones: In research, it's been proved that more of dietary acidosis intake leads to the formation of kidney stones, due to increased excretion of uric acid, and decreased secretion of citrate.

How to prevent acidosis?

Respiratory acidosis prevention

  • Stop smoking as it damages your lungs and makes hard to breath.
  • Obesity can be another problem, therefore, a healthy weight must be maintained
  • Never make sedatives with alcohol and take them as prescribed

Metabolic acidosis prevention

  • Drink enough amount of water or any other fluid and stay hydrated.
  • Alcohol must be stopped as this can increase lactic acid
  • Diabetes must be kept under control thus avoiding ketoacidosis.

What foods cause acidosis?

The food that can cause acidosis is high protein food which includes fish, meat, eggs. Most legumes like beans, peas, are acidic in nature and cause harm to the body. Most of the grains like coffee, sugar, and alcohol as they are acid-forming.

What are the risk factors contribute to acidosis?

Many risk factors have been identified for acidosis namely – kidney failure, diabetes, heart failure, high fat diet, dehydration, and obesity.

People experience shortness of breath, fatigue, confusion, sleeplessness, and headache when they have acidosis. In metabolic acidosis, the person suffers from shallow breathing, confusion, headache, and fruity breath smell.

Popular Questions & Answers

I am suffering with metabolic Acidosis during to excess acid production (hyper Acidity). Kindly suggest me the best treatment to get rid of metabolic Acidosis.

C.S.C, D.C.H, M.B.B.S
General Physician, Alappuzha
You need to avoid spicy foods and have non spicy balanced food at regular timings and if needed can take Omeprazole after a consult with a doctor

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