When Does Lactic Acidosis Occur?

Lactic Acidosis


Lactic acidosis is a condition that occurs when there is an excess amount of lactic acid in the body. This can happen when the body is not able to produce enough oxygen to meet the demands of the cells. Lactic acidosis can be life-threatening if left untreated, so it’s important to understand the causes and symptoms of this condition.


Lactic acidosis can occur due to a variety of factors, including:

  • Intense exercise
  • Medical conditions such as diabetes and liver disease
  • Medications such as metformin and HIV drugs
  • Severe infections
  • Severe dehydration


The symptoms of lactic acidosis can vary depending on the underlying cause, but common symptoms include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Muscle weakness and fatigue
  • Rapid breathing
  • Abdominal pain
  • Confusion and disorientation

If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s important to seek medical attention immediately.


The treatment for lactic acidosis depends on the underlying cause. In some cases, simply correcting the underlying issue will resolve the condition. In other cases, more aggressive treatment such as dialysis or oxygen therapy may be necessary. If you are taking medications that increase your risk of lactic acidosis, your doctor may monitor your blood lactate levels to ensure that they remain within a safe range.


While lactic acidosis cannot always be prevented, there are steps you can take to reduce your risk:

  • Avoid over-exerting yourself during exercise
  • Maintain good control of medical conditions such as diabetes and liver disease
  • Discuss the risks and benefits of any medications with your doctor
  • Stay hydrated during periods of illness or intense exercise


Lactic acidosis is a serious condition that can occur for a variety of reasons. It’s important to be aware of the causes and symptoms of this condition, and to seek medical attention if you experience any of these symptoms. By taking steps to reduce your risk, you can help protect yourself from this potentially life-threatening condition.