A 16 year old woman presents with pleuritic chest pain and a slight sensation of dyspnoea. First you examine the right side of the lung.
What does this ultrasound show?
This is normal lung on the non-painful side.
Sliding lung and constantly moving artefact below the pleura are seen and confirm the absence of pneumothorax at the point the transducer is exploring.
Now you examine the left lung. What does this ultrasound show?
- This is the painful side, and there a pneumothorax is present.
- There is loss of lung sliding, loss of all short path reverberation artefacts, and increased prominence of the horizontal long path reverberation artefacts known as A-lines.
- Not only is the parietal pleural surface still but so are all artefacts deep to the surface, in sharp contrast to the shimmering, moving artefacts seen in the normal lung.
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