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Having high respiratory rate. Should be concerned? Due to acidosis?

I ve recently noticed that my mum has a high respiratory rate , upon measuring it a few times at rest, the value comes to about 24 breaths per minute, I m wondering if this is a reason for concern? I m a first year medical student so I could be reading too much into this, but I m wondering if it could be hinting towards acidosis?
Asked On : Thu, 28 Mar 2013
Answers:  2 Views:  58
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Pulmonologist 's  Response
Dear MS. Nutty.neuron,

Im really concerned that your mother is hyperventilating( ie increased respiratory rate above 14breaths/min)

it would have been nice if you would have provided me with other information like, whether it was sudden in onset, is your mother having fever, her age, other associated complaints like Diabetes, hypertension, drugs she is taking etc.

coming to your doubt of acidosis a simple arterial blood gas analysis will give you insight.

im listing out a few common causes of hyperventilation

anxiety, stress, panic attack, asthma, exercise induced and fever.

if her hyperventilation persists, i would advice you to consult a pulmonologist for evaluation. take care. hope your gets well soon.
Answered: Thu, 28 Mar 2013
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Pulmonologist Dr. Satyadeo Choubey 's  Response
Hi nutty.neuron

high respiratory rates or tachypnoea can be caused by several physiological and pathologivcal condition.

I wish you have told the full symptomatology of your mother. tachypnoea if pathological is indeed a reason of concern.... may be a sign of infection.

If your concern is acidosis you can go for arterial blood gas analysis and confirm the same.

useful investigation will be ABG, chest xray PA view, complete blood count, blood sugar

best wishes
Answered: Thu, 28 Mar 2013
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