Alkalosis is a condition in which the body fluids have excess base (alkali). This is the opposite of excess acid (acidosis).
Causes, incidence, and risk factors
The kidneys and lungs maintain the proper balance of chemicals, called acids and bases, in the body. Decreased carbon dioxide (an acid) or increased bicarbonate (a base) levels make the body too alkaline, a condition called alkalosis.
To treat alkalosis, your health care provider needs to find the cause.
For alkalosis caused by hyperventilation, breathing into a paper bag allows you to keep more carbon dioxide in your body, which improves the alkalosis. If your oxygen level is low, you may receive oxygen.
Some people need medications to correct chemical loss (such as chloride and potassium). Your health care provider will monitor your vital signs (temperature, pulse, rate of breathing, blood pressure).
Most cases of alkalosis respond well to treatment.
David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.