Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between ABG and VBG


During emergency cases, trained personnel are tasked to make rapid decisions on how to handle patients before they taken to the hospital. When that happens, prompt and quick assessment is done before treatment is even started. This is intended to prevent adding more injuries to the patient. They look for the patient’s airway, breathing, and lastly, circulation.

All of these things are assessed by trained professionals during emergencies after which the patient is brought to the hospital. Now think about this, what connects the 3 key points presented above? The answer to that is simple. All of them relate to the process in which vital air enters the body, oxygen and carbon dioxide exchange, and oxygen and other gases are circulated in the blood. The terms common here are basically air and blood. And these terms refer to ventilation and circulation, both of which are needed to be constantly monitored to determine the state of oxygen transportation to the different cells of the body.

Physicians always check the levels of oxygen and carbon dioxide in the blood vessels through blood testing. These gases are basically referred to as blood gases. We have to remember that oxygen is important for our cells to work and function, and without it, our cells would slowly wither and die. On the other hand, carbon dioxide is not needed in the blood and should be properly eliminated to prevent complications later on. Furthermore, analysis of blood gases helps physicians determine the state of the body in its ability for gas-exchange, as well as, maintaining the normal range for blood pH of 7.35 to 7.45. A series of abnormal readings could imply serious problems.

What differentiates an arterial blood gas (ABG) from that of a venous blood gas (VBG)? The first and most distinct difference would be the area where they are taken from. Arterial blood gas testing comes from a sample of blood in the arteries. Bear in mind that arteries have oxygen-rich blood. On the other hand, a Venous Blood Gas testing comes from the veins of a patient, which have higher carbon dioxide levels.

Here are other differences. In ABG, the normal readings should include a PaO2 (pressure of oxygen content) of 80-100mmHg, PaCO2 (pressure exerted by carbon dioxide) of 35-45mmHg. In VBG, PaO2 is about 40-30mmHG and the PaCO2 is about 41-51mmHg. There is a significant difference in the readings presented. And lastly, an abnormal result indicates inadequate gas exchange or presence of other disease conditions.

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1 Comment

  1. this difference between ABG & VBG i got but what if PaO2 is around 39 and PaCO2 is 44.. can still it be ABG??
    if it can be, then howtomakesure that thisis not VBG??
    plz reply asap.. thanks..

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