The PaCOventilation response

There is a wide individual variation in the PaCO^ventilation response and it is strongly affected by drugs (e.g. opioids, sedatives). As PaCO2 increases a point of maximum stimulation is reached at 13.3 to 26.7 kPa (100-200 mmHg), after which ventilatory stimulation decreases again and finally apnea may result. In metabolic acidosis (e.g. diabetic acidosis) the PaCO2/ventilation response is shifted to the right, i.e. acidosis stimulates the respiratory center considerably for CO 2.

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