8 doctors weighed in:

Why does respiratory alkalosis cause hypokalemia while metabolic acidosis causes hyperkalemia?

8 doctors weighed in
Dr. Clarence Grim
Internal Medicine - Endocrinology
4 doctors agree

In brief: K and alkalosis acid

Blood K is sensitive to blood pH.
( hydrogen ion concentration). When H gets too high (acidosis) it moves into cells to protect from death from too much acid.. As H+ moves into cells a + ion must move out. This is usually K+. Thus hyperK. When H+ gets too low (alkalosis) in blood H+ moves from cell to blood to prevent death from low H+.. As H+ moves out of cell K+ moves in. Thus blood K goes down.

In brief: K and alkalosis acid

Blood K is sensitive to blood pH.
( hydrogen ion concentration). When H gets too high (acidosis) it moves into cells to protect from death from too much acid.. As H+ moves into cells a + ion must move out. This is usually K+. Thus hyperK. When H+ gets too low (alkalosis) in blood H+ moves from cell to blood to prevent death from low H+.. As H+ moves out of cell K+ moves in. Thus blood K goes down.
Dr. Clarence Grim
Dr. Clarence Grim
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Dr. Sameer Azhak
Internal Medicine - Cardiology
3 doctors agree

In brief: Potassium shift

the concentration of electrolytes in the body and blood stream are very complex.
The body strives to maintain normal concentrations of potassium, acid, as well as electrical charge. Acidosis causes a build up of hydrogen and cells will shift hydrogen and potassium to prevent acid buildup as a result potassium goes up, the reverse occurs when alkalosis happens

In brief: Potassium shift

the concentration of electrolytes in the body and blood stream are very complex.
The body strives to maintain normal concentrations of potassium, acid, as well as electrical charge. Acidosis causes a build up of hydrogen and cells will shift hydrogen and potassium to prevent acid buildup as a result potassium goes up, the reverse occurs when alkalosis happens
Dr. Sameer Azhak
Dr. Sameer Azhak
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1 comment
Dr. Clarence Grim
Acidosis is caused BY the build up of H+ ion. Not VV. A higher H+ is buffered by moving into cells in exchange for K moving out our cells. Thus higher blood K. Alkalosis is due to not enough H+ in blood. Cells "let out" H+ to help bring up low H+ in blood. As the H+ moves out of cell, K+ from blood enters the cell. Thus blood K goes down.
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