Metabolic acidosis

a. Defect. Increased acid accumulation or decreased extracellular HCO3.

b. Laboratory manifestation. Decreased serum pH; decreased serum HCO3.

c. Compensation. Increasing minute ventilation causes a decreased PacO2, which causes pH to increase; cells exchange extracellular H+ for intracellular Na+ and K+. The kidneys compensate more slowly by excreting H+ and generating HCO3. The degree of respiratory compensation can be estimated by the following formula:

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