Arterial blood gas is a blood test that is undertaken to study the levels of acidity, oxygen and carbon dioxide in the blood before it is transported to the tissues. The blood sample is collected and tested in a laboratory. By interpreting arterial blood gases test results, doctors can determine the state of the body's lung and kidney function.
Arterial blood gas analysis is widely available in hospitals. During most blood testing procedures, blood is drawn from a vein. But at this point the oxygen content in the blood is used up by the tissues. Therefore in an arterial blood gas test, the blood sample is drawn from an artery; at this point the blood hasn't reached the tissues, preserving the blood's oxygen content.
The obtained blood sample is then taken to the lab for testing. Once all the bubbles are eliminated the syringe is sealed and placed in ice. This is done to slow the metabolic process. This is important for maintaining the accuracy of the results. The blood is then analyzed carefully, determining the acidity of the blood, the amount and pressure of oxygen and carbon dioxide and bicarbonate levels.
The analysis of arterial blood gas values shed light on the following:
The test uses a complex formula. The final analysis requires the use of an arterial blood gas calculator to derive an accurate interpretation.