The use of sodium bicarbonate in the treatment of acidosis in sepsis: A literature update on a long term debate

Dimitrios Velissaris, Vasilios Karamouzos, Nikolaos Ktenopoulos, Charalampos Pierrakos, Menelaos Karanikolas

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations

Abstract

Introduction. Sepsis and its consequences such as metabolic acidosis are resulting in increased mortality. Although correction of metabolic acidosis with sodium bicarbonate seems a reasonable approach, there is ongoing debate regarding the role of bicarbonates as a therapeutic option. Methods. We conducted a PubMed literature search in order to identify published literature related to the effects of sodium bicarbonate treatment on metabolic acidosis due to sepsis. The search included all articles published in English in the last 35 years. Results. There is ongoing debate regarding the use of bicarbonates for the treatment of acidosis in sepsis, but there is a trend towards not using bicarbonate in sepsis patients with arterial blood gas pH>7.15. Conclusions. Routine use of bicarbonate for treatment of severe acidemia and lactic acidosis due to sepsis is subject of controversy, and current opinion does not favor routine use of bicarbonates. However, available evidence is inconclusive, and more studies are required to determine the potential benefit, if any, of bicarbonate therapy in the sepsis patient with acidosis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number605830
JournalCritical Care Research and Practice
Volume2015
DOIs
StatePublished - 2015

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