Arterial blood gases (ABG's) is a blood test which is used to give an indication of ventilation, gas exchange and acid-base status and is taken from an arterial blood supply. It should be noted that it is not to be confused with venous blood gases which are used when arterial supply is not available or unreliable due to disease. The line in is usually inserted in the radial artery located at the wrist but is also sometimes used in the femoral artery in the groin. This is important to consider when moving and handling a patient as it is easy to catch a line on an object or clothing and care needs to be taken.
|Arterial Blood Gases|
It can be argued that one of the most important clinical uses of ABG analysis is to assess if a patient is in Type 1 (Hypoxaemia) or Type 2 (hypercapnia) respiratory failure and it is important that as physiotherapists we able to quickly and correctly interpret this.
1. To deliver oxygen to the blood
2. To eliminate carbon dioxide from it