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Acidosis vs. Alkalosis: What's the Difference?

Edited by Sara Rehman || By Sumera Saeed || Published on January 26, 2024
Acidosis is an excess of acid in the blood lowering pH below 7.35, while alkalosis is an excess of base raising pH above 7.45.

Key Differences

Acidosis is a condition characterized by an increase in the acidity of the blood, leading to a pH below 7.35. This can be due to an accumulation of acids or a loss of bicarbonate. Alkalosis, in contrast, is a condition where the blood becomes too alkaline, with a pH above 7.45, often caused by an excess of bicarbonate or a loss of acids.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 26, 2024
In acidosis, the body experiences an elevated concentration of hydrogen ions, reducing the blood's pH. This can occur due to respiratory issues (respiratory acidosis) or problems with metabolic functions (metabolic acidosis). Alkalosis, on the other hand, arises when there is a reduction in hydrogen ions or an increase in base components, resulting in a higher pH. This can be classified into respiratory alkalosis, due to decreased carbon dioxide, or metabolic alkalosis, due to increased bicarbonate.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 26, 2024
Causes of acidosis vary; metabolic acidosis can result from kidney failure, diabetes, or excessive alcohol consumption, while respiratory acidosis is often due to lung diseases. Alkalosis causes are different; metabolic alkalosis can stem from prolonged vomiting or diuretic use, and respiratory alkalosis may be caused by hyperventilation, often due to anxiety or pain.
Sara Rehman
Jan 26, 2024
Symptoms of acidosis and alkalosis also differ. Acidosis can present with fatigue, confusion, and breathing difficulties. In severe cases, it can lead to shock or death. Alkalosis symptoms include muscle twitching, hand tremor, and light-headedness. Severe alkalosis can cause muscle spasms, convulsions, and even loss of consciousness.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 26, 2024

Comparison Chart

PH Level

Below 7.35
Above 7.45
Sumera Saeed
Jan 26, 2024
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Primary Cause

Excess acid or loss of bicarbonate
Excess bicarbonate or loss of acid
Sara Rehman
Jan 26, 2024

Types

Metabolic and Respiratory
Metabolic and Respiratory
Sumera Saeed
Jan 26, 2024

Common Causes

Kidney failure, diabetes, lung diseases
Prolonged vomiting, diuretics, hyperventilation
Sumera Saeed
Jan 26, 2024

Symptoms

Fatigue, confusion, breathing issues
Muscle twitching, tremor, light-headedness
Sumera Saeed
Jan 26, 2024

Acidosis and Alkalosis Definitions

Acidosis

A medical condition characterized by acidic bodily fluids.
Acidosis in diabetic patients can be a sign of uncontrolled blood sugar levels.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 18, 2023
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Alkalosis

An increase in blood pH beyond the normal range.
The patient’s breathing difficulties were attributed to respiratory alkalosis.
Sara Rehman
Dec 18, 2023

Acidosis

An imbalance in the body's pH levels towards acidity.
Acidosis was evident in her symptoms of fatigue and confusion.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 18, 2023

Alkalosis

A medical condition marked by a high pH in body fluids.
Alkalosis can cause muscle twitching and confusion, as seen in this case.
Aimie Carlson
Dec 18, 2023

Acidosis

A condition of increased blood acidity.
The patient's lab results indicated acidosis, requiring immediate intervention.
Janet White
Dec 18, 2023

Alkalosis

A condition where the blood becomes too alkaline.
Alkalosis was suspected due to her prolonged episodes of vomiting.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 18, 2023

Acidosis

A decrease in blood pH due to elevated hydrogen ion concentration.
His respiratory problems led to acidosis, affecting his overall health.
Janet White
Dec 18, 2023

Alkalosis

An abnormal increase in blood bicarbonate levels.
The lab tests confirmed metabolic alkalosis in the patient.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 18, 2023

Acidosis

A pathological decrease in the pH of body tissues.
The doctor diagnosed her with metabolic acidosis after evaluating her kidney function.
Aimie Carlson
Dec 18, 2023

Alkalosis

A bodily state with excessive base or deficient acid.
His symptoms indicated alkalosis, possibly from excessive antacid use.
Janet White
Dec 18, 2023

Acidosis

Abnormally high acidity of the blood and body tissues caused by a deficiency of bicarbonates or an excess of acids other than carbonic acid. It can result from any of various acute or chronic disorders or from the ingestion of certain drugs and toxins. Also called metabolic acidosis.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

Alkalosis

Abnormally high alkalinity of the blood and body tissues caused by an excess of bicarbonates, as from an increase in alkali intake, or by or a deficiency of acids other than carbonic acid, as from vomiting. Also called metabolic alkalosis.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

Acidosis

Abnormally high acidity of the blood and body tissues caused by an excess of carbon dioxide due to hypoventilation. Also called respiratory acidosis.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

Alkalosis

Abnormally high alkalinity of the blood and body tissues caused by a deficiency of carbon dioxide due to hyperventilation. Also called respiratory alkalosis.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

Acidosis

(pathology) An abnormally increased acidity of the blood.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

Alkalosis

An abnormally increased alkalinity in the blood.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

Acidosis

Abnormally high acidity of the blood and other body fluids.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

Alkalosis

Abnormally high alkalinity in the blood and other body fluids.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

Acidosis

Abnormally high acidity (excess hydrogen-ion concentration) of the blood and other body tissues
Sumera Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

Alkalosis

Abnormally high alkalinity (low hydrogen-ion concentration) of the blood and other body tissues
Sumera Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

FAQs

Are there different types of acidosis?

Yes, primarily metabolic acidosis and respiratory acidosis.
Janet White
Jan 26, 2024

How is acidosis treated?

Treatment depends on the cause, ranging from medication to lifestyle changes.
Harlon Moss
Jan 26, 2024

How is alkalosis treated?

Treatment involves addressing the underlying cause and may include electrolyte replacement.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 26, 2024

What causes alkalosis?

Common causes include loss of stomach acids, hyperventilation, and diuretic overuse.
Aimie Carlson
Jan 26, 2024

What is alkalosis?

Alkalosis is a condition where blood pH rises above 7.45 due to increased alkalinity.
Aimie Carlson
Jan 26, 2024

What are the symptoms of acidosis?

Symptoms include fatigue, confusion, shortness of breath, and in severe cases, shock.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 26, 2024

What is acidosis?

Acidosis is a condition where blood pH falls below 7.35 due to increased acidity.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 26, 2024

What causes acidosis?

Causes include kidney failure, respiratory issues, and metabolic disturbances.
Sara Rehman
Jan 26, 2024

What are the symptoms of alkalosis?

Symptoms include muscle twitching, hand tremors, dizziness, and in severe cases, convulsions.
Janet White
Jan 26, 2024

Are there different types of alkalosis?

Yes, the main types are metabolic alkalosis and respiratory alkalosis.
Harlon Moss
Jan 26, 2024

Is acidosis linked to diabetes?

Yes, diabetic ketoacidosis is a form of acidosis common in uncontrolled diabetes.
Harlon Moss
Jan 26, 2024

Can acidosis and alkalosis be prevented?

Prevention focuses on managing underlying health conditions and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Harlon Moss
Jan 26, 2024

Can exercise induce acidosis or alkalosis?

Intense exercise can lead to temporary acidosis due to lactic acid buildup.
Aimie Carlson
Jan 26, 2024

Can diet affect acidosis and alkalosis?

Yes, diet can influence body pH, though it's not the sole factor in these conditions.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 26, 2024

How quickly can acidosis or alkalosis develop?

These conditions can develop rapidly or over time, depending on the cause.
Janet White
Jan 26, 2024

Is acidosis more common than alkalosis?

Both conditions are common, but their prevalence depends on underlying health factors and environmental conditions.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 26, 2024

Can dehydration cause acidosis or alkalosis?

Dehydration can contribute to both conditions, depending on the body's response.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 26, 2024

Can stress cause alkalosis?

Yes, stress can lead to hyperventilation, potentially causing respiratory alkalosis.
Harlon Moss
Jan 26, 2024

Is it possible to have a mixed acid-base disorder?

Yes, it's possible to have a combination of acidosis and alkalosis, requiring complex medical evaluation.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 26, 2024

Are children at risk of acidosis or alkalosis?

Yes, both conditions can occur in children, often due to underlying medical issues.
Harlon Moss
Jan 26, 2024
About Author
Written by
Sumera Saeed
Sumera is an experienced content writer and editor with a niche in comparative analysis. At Diffeence Wiki, she crafts clear and unbiased comparisons to guide readers in making informed decisions. With a dedication to thorough research and quality, Sumera's work stands out in the digital realm. Off the clock, she enjoys reading and exploring diverse cultures.
Edited by
Sara Rehman
Sara Rehman is a seasoned writer and editor with extensive experience at Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Information Technology, she combines her academic prowess with her passion for writing to deliver insightful and well-researched content.

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