Blood gas

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A blood gas test is a blood test that measures blood gas tension values as indicators of ventilation, respiration, and oxygenation. The source of the blood is reflected in the name of each test; arterial blood gases come from arteries, venous blood gases come from veins and capillary blood gases come from capillaries.[1]

Values measured[edit]

  • pH — The acidity or basicity of the blood.
  • PaCO
    — The partial pressure of carbon dioxide in the blood.
  • PaO
    — The partial pressure of oxygen in the blood.
  • HCO
    — The level of bicarbonate in the blood.
  • BE — The base-excess of bicarbonate in the blood.

Purposes for testing[edit]

Abnormal results[edit]

Abnormal results may be due to a wide range of diseases, including poisoning and trauma as well as lung, kidney, or metabolic diseases. Head or neck injuries or other injuries that affect breathing can also lead to abnormal results.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Seifter JL. Acid-base disorders. In: Goldman L, Ausiello D, eds. Cecil Medicine. 23rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2007:chap 119

External links[edit]