Drugs Information Online
Drugs and diseases reference index

Drugs and diseases reference index
Search
EN

Diseases reference index «Respiratory alkalosis»

Respiratory alkalosis is a condition marked by low levels of carbon dioxide in the blood due to breathing excessively.

See also: Alkalosis

Causes

Common causes include:

  • Anxiety
  • Fever
  • Hyperventilation

Any lung disease that leads to shortness of breath can also cause respiratory alkalosis.

Symptoms

The symptoms may include:

  • Dizziness
  • Light-headedness
  • Numbness of the hands and feet

Exams and Tests

  • Arterial blood gas (measures levels of oxygen and carbon dioxide in the blood; in respiratory alkalosis, the level of carbon dioxide is too low)
  • Chest x-ray
  • Pulmonary function test

Treatment

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.

Outlook (Prognosis)

What will happen depends on the condition that is causing the respiratory alkalosis.

Possible Complications

Seizures may occur if the alkalosis is extremely severe. This is very rare.

When to Contact a Medical Professional

Call your health care provider if you have any symptoms of lung disease, such as chronic cough or shortness of breath.

Alternative Names

Alkalosis - respiratory