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Chloride (Cl-)

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What is the Lab Name for Chloride?

Chloride

What is the Lab Abbreviation for Chloride?

Cl-

What is Chloride in terms of Nursing Labs?

Chloride (Cl), an anion found in the blood, works together with sodium to help maintain oncotic pressure and water balance in the body.  Chloride is inversely related to bicarbonate levels in the blood.  Chloride is also part of hydrochloric acid (HCL) which is utilized in the stomach to breakdown food.  When Red Blood Cells (RBCs) take up CO2 they take up chloride as well.  The negative ion bicarbonate then leaves the red blood cell so that the electrical charge is maintained.  Extra chloride is excreted into the urine by the kidneys.

What is the Normal Range for Chloride?

96-108 mEq/L

What are the Indications for Chloride?

  • Identify
    • Acid-Base Imbalance

What would cause Increased Levels of Chloride?

  • Dehydration
  • Acute Renal Failure
  • Cushing Disease
  • Metabolic Acidosis
  • Respiratory Alkalosis

What would cause Decreased Levels of Chloride?

  • Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)
  • Water intoxication
  • Burns
  • Metabolic Alkalosis
  • Respiratory Acidosis
  • Addison Disease
  • Salt-losing Nephritis
  • Excessive sweating
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting

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