Friday, August 28, 2015

Possible Cause of Death-Respiratory Acidosis

From reading, I have a theory about what led to Myrna's death. It's much like stacking dominoes-as one thing declined, so other processes in the body followed. But it's not a process that I believe I could have prevented. And she was on oxygen in the ER and was not improving. The chemical process may have been caused by hypochloremia-low chloride-caused by vomiting, diarrhea-which leads to hypercapnia (respiratory acidosis) which is too much carbon dioxide in the blood. Or somehow, on it's own, hypercapnia developed in the blood. Respiratory acidosis develops when there is decreased ventilation-inability to get enough oxygen-which leads to an increase in carbon dioxide in the blood. Because the body cannot expel carbon dioxide due to congestion/lung damage/heart condition, more CO2 than O builds up. This becomes hypercapnia and leads to increased breathing rate as the body struggles to produce oxygen. The heart beats faster, this leads to blood pressure increasing, and the inability to breathe, to produce oxygen is exacerbated by damaged lungs and increased heart size and congestion. Her heart had been stable the day before and she only had three oz of fluid removed. And yet, we know congestion was returning rapidly since 5 oz had been removed the day before.

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