Calculations

There are various calculations that are commonly used diagnostically in interpreting acid base disorders and distinguishing between different causes of acid base disorders. Calculating the anion gap is an approach that must be taken in all cases of metabolic acidosis. Other calculations such as osmolar gap and urine anion gap, are used when clinically, the cause of an acid base disorder is in doubt.

This teaching module will discuss the various diagnostic calculations that can be useful in interpreting acid base disorders. Emphasis will be placed on the underlying rational behind each formula to increase comprehension and deduction and minimize memorization.

Topics to be covered are:

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