Which physical findings are characteristic of hemothorax?

Updated: Jul 13, 2020
  • Author: Mary C Mancini, MD, PhD, MMM; Chief Editor: Jeffrey C Milliken, MD  more...
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Tachypnea is common; shallow breaths may be noted. Findings include diminished ipsilateral breath sounds and a dull percussion note.

If substantial systemic blood loss has occurred, hypotension and tachycardia are present. Respiratory distress reflects both pulmonary compromise and hemorrhagic shock. Children may have traumatic hemothorax without bony fractures of the chest wall.

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