Jan 18, 2018




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Blood Gases

Blood Gases (HCBGAS) Blood Gas Lab Test

Name: Blood Gases

Test Name: Blood Gases

Health Link Test Code: HCBGAS

LIS Test Code: BGAS

CPT Code(s): 82803

Test Component:

pH, pCO2, pO2, base excess, and actual bicarbonate.

Methodology: Electrode

Days Performed: Daily, 24 hours.

Stat In-Lab Turnaround Time: Less than 30 minutes.

Patient Preparation:

None. For venous samples on outpatients, send patient to UWHC Outpatient Phlebotomy to be drawn.

Specimen: Arterial, venous, or capillary

Collection Container: Radiometer PICO® syringe

Also Acceptable: 2 full Radiometer capillary tubes

Collection Instructions:

Radiometer "PICO"® syringes must be free of bubbles and clots. Two full Radiometer capillaries free of air bubbles and clots are needed for capillary blood.

Collection Volume: 1.5 mL

Pediatric Collection Volume: 0.5 mL

Stability Ambient:

30 minutes

Stability Frozen:

Not acceptable

Sample Analyzed: Whole Blood

Testing Volume: 1.5 mL

Pediatric Testing Volume: 0.5 mL

Specimen Transport:

Transport specimen to UWHC Hospital Laboratory immediately. Assure specimen receipt in the lab is within 15 minutes of collection.

Unacceptable Criteria:

Clotted specimens, specimens with air or specimens past stability time are not acceptable.


Arterial specimen


1 day to 10 days:


10 days and up:

pCO2 0 days-23 months:  27-41 mmHg
  24 months and up: 34-46 mmHg
pO2, resting 1 day and up: 80-90 mmHg 
Base Excess 0 days to 30 days: -10.9 to -2.0 mmol/L
  31 days to 12 months: -7.0 to -1.0 mmol/L
  1 year to 17 years: -4.0 to +2.0 mmol/L
  18 years and up: -2.5 to +2.5 mmol/L
Actual Bicarbonate  0 days to 30 days: 17.0-24.0 mmol/L
  31 days to 60 days: 19.0-24.0 mmol/L
  2 months to 2 years 16.0-24.0 mmol/L
  3 years and up: 22.0-26.0 mmol/L


Venous Specimen This reference range is literature based.

pH                         7.31-7.41
pCO2 40-52 mm Hg
pO2 25-40 mm Hg
Actual Bicarbonate 22-28 mmol/L

Capillary Specimens: reference intervals are not well established in the literature. Capillary results may or may not correlate with arterial values.


Interpretation Type: Reference Interval

Effective Date of Reference Range: Mon, 06 Jun 2016 07:00:00 CDT

Critical Calls: yes