Sodium controls which types of cells?
Brain cells and skeletal muscle cells
Abnormal sodium levels cause which symptoms?
Symptoms from brain cell and skeletal muscle dysfunction:
- decreased level of consciousness (↓ LOC)
- muscle twitching
Potassium controls which types of cells?
Heart and skeletal muscle cells
Abnormal potassium levels cause which symptoms?
Symptoms from heart and skeletal muscle dysfunction:
- heart dysrhythmias
- muscle weakness and cramps
- muscle numbness and tingling (paresthesia)
Magnesium and Calcium controls which types of cells?
Skeletal and heart muscle cells; and cells for nerve function
What is the function of white blood cells (WBCs)?
to fight infection
What does an increased and decreased white blood cell (WBC) count indicate?
Decreased WBC: the client is immunosuppressed (risk for infection)
Increased WBC: the client has an active infection
neutropenia and leukopenia
leukopenia and neutropenia both indicate ↓ WBCs.
What is the function of RBCs?
RBCs: to carry oxygen to all the organs.
Erythrocyte is another name for red blood cells.
What does a decreased RBC indicate?
Anemia: the body doesn't have enough oxygen causing fatigue and weakness.
Hemoglobin is a protein on RBCs that carries oxygen.
Hematocrit is the proportion of RBCs in the blood.
What do both hemoglobin and hematocrit indicate?
Both indicate how much blood and oxygen the client has.
Hemoglobin and hematocrit are commonly referred to as "H and H".
What does a decreased hemoglobin and hematocrit most commonly indicate?
- ↓ hemoglobin and hematocrit: anemia or bleeding
There is not enough oxygen or RBCs due to bleeding.
What does an increased hemoglobin and hematocrit most commonly indicate?
- ↑ hemoglobin and hematocrit: dehydration
The volume of fluid in the blood is decreased making the red portion of the blood look more concentrated.
What is the function of platelets?
platelets: for the blood to clot properly
Thrombocytopenia indicates low platelets.
This can cause an increased risk of bleeding.
What is blood urea nitrogen (BUN) and what does an increased level indicate?
BUN is the waste product of protein breakdown in the liver excreted by the kidneys.
An increased BUN may or may not indicate a kidney problem because other conditions can increase the BUN.
What is creatinine and what does an increased level indicate?
Creatinine is the breakdown product of muscle and other proteins that are excreted by the kidneys.
Any increase in creatinine indicates a kidney problem.
What is the glomerular filtration rate (GFR)?
GFR is how much urine gets filtered through the kidneys:
- It is controlled by blood pressure
- It is the best way to measure kidney function
Bilirubin is the breakdown product of old red blood cells and is secreted in bile by the liver.
It causes the yellow color in urine and stool.
What does an increased bilirubin indicate?
An increased bilirubin can indicate liver damage or liver disease.
What is ALT, AST, ALP and what does an increased level indicate?
ALT, AST, and ALP are enzymes released by the liver when there is inflammation.
ALP can also be elevated with bone disorders.
Cholesterol is fat in the body. It is needed to build healthy cells, but an increased level can increase the risk of heart disease and stroke.
What are high-density lipoproteins (HDL) and low-density lipoproteins (LDL)?
HDL and LDL are types of cholesterol:
- HDL is the "Happy" or good cholesterol
- LDL is the bad cholesterol
What is ammonia in regards to the liver?
Ammonia is a waste product of proteins.
The liver helps the body get rid of ammonia by turning it into urea and disposing of it by the kidneys (see BUN).
What is albumin and what are it's 3 main functions?
Albumin is a protein made by the liver.
Functions of albumin/proteins:
- prevents fluids from leaking out of the vascular space
- transports substances throughout the body
- nourishes tissues
What are the most common reasons an albumin/protein level is decreased?
Albumin/protein levels are decreased because:
- malnutrition: not eating enough protein
- liver disease: the liver can't make proteins
- kidney disease: kidneys are damaged and can't hold onto the proteins and are excreted
What are the blood coagulation labs?
The blood coagulation labs are:
- aPTT (activated partial thromboplastin time)
- PTT (partial thromboplastin time)
- PT (prothrombin time)
- INR (international normalized ratio)
These labs refer to bleeding time. The higher the number the more likely the client will bleed. Depending on the situation, a higher number (called therapeutic) is desired to prevent blood clots.
What is amylase and lipase?
Amylase and lipase are enzymes released by the pancreas when there is inflammation.
An increased level indicates pancreatitis.