The bicarbonate ion acts like a buffer to maintain the your normal levels of acidity in your blood. Bicarbonate levels are measured to monitor the acidity of the your blood and your body fluids. The acidity is then effected by foods or medications that are taken in and the function of the kidneys and lungs. The normal serum range for bicarbonate is 22-30 mmol/L.
The bicarbonate test is most often done along with tests for other blood electrolytes. Disruptions in the normal bicarbonate level may be due to diseases in your body that may interfere with respiratory function, kidney diseases, metabolic conditions or many other causes.