Fast Five Quiz: Allergic Asthma Presentation and Diagnosis

Zab Mosenifar, MD


September 11, 2019

When patients have an acute asthma exacerbation, lung findings may include wheezing, rhonchi, hyperinflation, or a prolonged expiratory phase. In cases involving severe disease, lung auscultation may reveal signs of respiratory distress and failure (eg, nasal flaring, grunting, accessory muscle use, cyanosis) or absent breath sounds, which indicate poor air movement. Focal wheezing may indicate a foreign body or other airway obstruction, such as a tumor.

A heart murmur is not an expected finding during an acute asthma exacerbation. The presence of a murmur, S3 gallop, or pericardial friction rub suggests a cardiac problem and not asthma.

Similarly, edema should not be present. Its presence is suggestive of right- or left-sided heart failure.

Learn more information on the presentation of allergic asthma.


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