The nurse is reviewing labs on a client with second- and third-degree burns from a house fire. Which abnormal lab value would the nurse expect to find with this client?

  1. pH of 7.41
  2. albumin of 3.9 g/dL
  3. hemoglobin of 15 g/dL
  4. potassium of 5.9 mEq/L
Number 4 is correct.
Rationale: The normal pH in adults ranges from 7.35 to 7.45. Albumin values range from 3.5 to 5.0 g/dL. Normal hemoglobin ranges from 12 to 16 g/dL for women and 14 to 18 g/dL for men. Normal potassium levels are 3.5 – 5.0 mEq/L. Potassium levels become elevated in burns due to disruption of the sodium-potassium pump, red blood cell hemolysis, and tissue damage.