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How does the bicarbonate blood test work?

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A doctor or nurse will take a sample of your blood from your arm with a needle. Let your doctor know if you take any medications or supplements, because they can affect the results. So can eating grapefruits, tangerines, and other fruits high in acid.

The test uses only the fluid in your blood, not the blood cells or the platelets that help your blood clot. A lab technician will add acid to the liquid to unlock carbon dioxide from the bicarbonate. The amount of bicarbonate is measured by how fast the sample’s acidity changes.

SOURCES:

University of Rochester Medical Center: “Bicarbonate.”

Scripps Health: “CO2 Blood Test.”

Lab Tests Online: “Bicarbonate.”

National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute: “Types of blood tests.”

University of California San Francisco Medical Center: “CO2”

The Mayo Clinic: “Diabetic ketoacidosis,” “Emphysema.”

The University of Tennessee Medical Center: “Ethylene glycol poisoning.”

Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar on January 28, 2018

SOURCES:

University of Rochester Medical Center: “Bicarbonate.”

Scripps Health: “CO2 Blood Test.”

Lab Tests Online: “Bicarbonate.”

National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute: “Types of blood tests.”

University of California San Francisco Medical Center: “CO2”

The Mayo Clinic: “Diabetic ketoacidosis,” “Emphysema.”

The University of Tennessee Medical Center: “Ethylene glycol poisoning.”

Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar on January 28, 2018

NEXT QUESTION:

It measures how many millimoles of carbon dioxide is in a liter, or about a quart, of fluid (mmol/L). A normal result is between 23 and 29 mmol/L.

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