Alkalosis occurs when the pH of the blood exceeds 7.45. Healthy pH of the blood (not to be confused with urine or saliva pH) must remain between 7.35 and 7.45. Causes of alkalosis are considered respiratory or metabolic. A person may or may not experience symptoms. If symptoms do occur, they would include what you see in each photo.Potential causes for alkalosis include:
- Respiratory alkalosis is caused by low carbon dioxide levels which can occur at a high altitude or having a disease that reduces oxygen in the blood, which would cause you to breathe faster (hyperventilate). This lowers carbon dioxide levels. Breathing into a paper bag in the case of a person with hyperventilation forces the person to breathe the carbon dioxide they just blew out back into the lungs and resupplies the needed carbon dioxide.
- Hypochloremic alkalosis is generally caused by excessive vomiting, which results in the loss of hydrochloric acid (hydrogen and chloride ions) with the stomach contents. In the hospital setting this can commonly occur from nasogastric suction tubes. Severe vomiting also causes loss of potassium (hypokalaemia) and sodium (hyponatraemia). The kidneys compensate for these losses by retaining sodium in the collecting ducts at the expense of hydrogen ions (sparing sodium/potassium pumps to prevent further loss of potassium), leading to metabolic alkalosis.
- Hyperaldosteronism can occur when the kidneys lose hydrogen and aldosterone increases the activity of sodium-hydrogen exchange protein in the kidneys.
- Contraction alkalosis results from a loss of water in the extracellular space which is poor in bicarbonate, typically from diuretic use.
- Alkalotic agents, such as bicarbonate (administrated in cases of peptic ulcer or hyperacidity) or antacids, administered in excess can lead to an alkalosis.
- Severe dehydration, or endocrine disorders like Cushing's syndrome.
- Hypokalemic alkalosis is caused by the kidneys' response to an extreme lack or loss of potassium, which can occur when people take certain diuretic medications.
HOME REMEDY: Bananas and cranberry juice either unsweetened or sweetened with honey should correct metabolic alkalosis. All of the chemical factors above are addressed in the Alkalosis Remedy, however, if the issue is from severe vomiting, kidney disease, reaction to medications, etc, you need to correct that root issue.