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What Are the Signs & Symptoms of High Co2 Blood Levels?

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Carbon dioxide, or CO2, is a normal product of metabolism within the body's cells. The blood carries this carbon dioxide waste to the lungs to be exhaled out of the system. When there is an elevated level of CO2 within the blood, complications occur. Doctors refer to this medical condition as hypercapnia, or hypercarbia. This can occur through health problems, environmental exposure to carbon dioxide or unsafe scuba diving practices or faulty diving equipment. Shortness of Breath Too much carbon dioxide within the blood causes the body's pH level to plummet and become dangerously acidic, explains Auburn University at Montgomery School of Sciences. The higher the acidic quality, the more difficult it is for the blood's hemoglobin to pick up oxygen. The result is rapid breathing in order to increase lowered oxygen levels and, eventually, difficulty in catching one's breath. Headache A study revealed in a report by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) exposed 42 volunteers to ... more
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