Hypercapnia is a condition characterized by the excessive accumulation of carbon dioxide in the blood. The cause can be found in anomalies in lung or heart operations.


The increased partial pressure of carbon dioxide in the blood is usually indicative of respiratory failure for inadequate alveolar ventilation and in this case is associated with hypoxia.


Hypercapnia can have different associated symptoms that may occur, depending on the severity of the condition, ranging from increased heart rate (tachycardia) or ectopic, dyspnea, rash, muscle spasms, increased blood pressure, headaches, confusion, lethargy, and also hyperventilation, disorientation and loss of consciousness. In severe cases it can be fatal.


More specifically, when the pressure of carbon dioxide increases above 60-75 mmHg the patient has dyspnea and abnormal heartbeat, when it comes to 70-80 mmHg the patient undergoes lethargy and semicoma and at 100-150 mmHg he goes to a coma and possible death.


What kind of diseases can be associated with hypercapnia?

The following diseases may be associated with hypercapnia:


  • Sleep apnea
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Heart disease


Remember that this is not an exhaustive list and it is highly recommended to consult your doctor, in case of symptom’s persistence.


What is the therapy for hypercapnia?

To enable the development of a treatment aimed at resolution of hypercapnia, it is important to understand the base cause of the disorder and to act on this. Since the evolution of the condition can lead to important complications, in the event of hypercapnia, you should visit your doctor and not implement “do it yourself” remedies.


When is most likely to contact your doctor in case of hypercapnia?

In case of hypercapnia, you should consult your doctor immediately or the emergency room.