Observations of Breathing in Diagnosing Sickness
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Observations of Breathing in Diagnosing Sickness

Observations of Breathing in Diagnosing Sickness




      

Observations of Breathing in Diagnosing Sickness


Observations of Breathing in Diagnosing Sickness

It is estimated that the normal man in a state of rest will breathe sixteen times per minute. Any radical departure from the rate will indicate disease. An increase of two respirations per minute is supposed to indicate a rise of one degree F. in the body temperature, though this rule is subject to variations. Inspection of the bare chest tells the trained physician much regarding the condition of his patient and even the layman can glean much knowledge from that source.

If the patient is breathing from twenty-five to thirty-five times per minute, the respiration being confined to one lung as indicated by the lack of expansion in the other, and if he lies so as to take the strain off the lung that does not expand, it is almost sure that the patient has pneumonia. In case the lung is fixed rigidly by the muscles and the opposite lung forced to do all the work, then the patient has pleurisy.

In profound typhoid states the breathing is very much slowed and irregular, at last presenting what is known as the Cheyne-Stokes respiration, in which the patient will breathe several short shallow respirations, pause for a time, heave a deep sigh and then repeat the rapid breathing. This type of breathing is looked upon as a very grave symptom in all conditions characterized by lack of physical strength.

Moody, Charles Stuart. Backwoods Surgery & Medicine. New York: Outing Pub., 1916. Print.

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