Clinical Information Discusses physiology, pathophysiology, and general clinical aspects, as they relate to a laboratory test
Chloride (Cl) is the major anion in the extracelullar water space; its physiological significance is in maintaining proper body water distribution, osmotic pressure, and normal anion-cation balance in the extracellular fluid compartment.
Chloride is increased in dehydration, renal tubular acidosis (hyperchloremia metabolic acidosis), acute renal failure, metabolic acidosis associated with prolonged diarrhea and loss of sodium bicarbonate, diabetes insipidus, adrenocortical hyperfuction, salicylate intoxication and with excessive infusion of isotonic saline or extremely high dietary intake of salt. Hyperchloremia acidosis may be a sign of severe renal tubular pathology.
Chloride is decreased in overhydration, chronic respiratory acidosis, salt-losing nephritis, metabolic alkalosis, congestive heart failure, Addisonian crisis, certain types of metabolic acidosis, persistent gastric secretion and prolonged vomiting, aldosteronism, bromide intoxication, syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone secretion, and conditions associated with expansion of extracellular fluid volume.
Evaluation of water, electrolyte, and acid-base status
In normal individuals, serum chloride values vary little during the day, although there is a slight decrease after meals due to the diversion of chloride to the production of gastric juice.
Cautions Discusses conditions that may cause diagnostic confusion, including improper specimen collection and handling, inappropriate test selection, and interfering substances
High serum values of other halide ions may lead to falsely-high readings on the chloride ion-selective electrode.
Reference Values Describes reference intervals and additional information for interpretation of test results. May include intervals based on age and sex when appropriate. Intervals are Mayo-derived, unless otherwise designated. If an interpretive report is provided, the reference value field will state this.
1-17 years: 102-112 mmol/L
> or =18 years: 100-108 mmol/L
Reference values have not been established for patients who are <12 months of age.
Clinical References Provides recommendations for further in-depth reading of a clinical nature
Tietz Textbook of Clinical Chemistry. Edited by CA Burtis, ER Ashwood. WB Saunders Company, Philadelphia, PA, 1994