Medical Definition of Kussmaul breathing

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Kussmaul breathing: Air hunger, or the rapid, deep, and labored breathing characteristic of patients with acidosis (excess acidity of tissues). For example, Kussmaul breathing is seen with the acidosis of diabetes mellitus that is seriously out of control. Treatment is directed toward controlling the underlying disease.

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Reviewed on 12/12/2018

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