How is respiratory failure diagnosed?

Updated: Apr 07, 2020
  • Author: Ata Murat Kaynar, MD; Chief Editor: Michael R Pinsky, MD, CM, Dr(HC), FCCP, FAPS, MCCM  more...
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The diagnosis of acute or chronic respiratory failure begins with clinical suspicion of its presence. Confirmation of the diagnosis is based on arterial blood gas analysis (see Workup). Evaluation of an underlying cause must be initiated early, frequently in the presence of concurrent treatment for acute respiratory failure. The cause of respiratory failure is often evident after a careful history and physical examination.

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