Which physical findings are characteristic of oxides of nitrogen smoke inhalation?

Updated: Oct 15, 2021
  • Author: Keith A Lafferty, MD; Chief Editor: Joe Alcock, MD, MS  more...
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Answer

The severity of physical examination findings depends on the severity of exposure. Mild exposure may result in injected conjunctivae and normal to mildly erythematous-appearing mucous membranes. After a more severe exposure, signs may range from mild respiratory distress (eg, tachypnea, accessory muscle use) to more severe signs of wheezes and rales, yellow frothy sputum, and yellow staining of the mucous membranes. This may be followed by cyanosis, lethargy, convulsions, coma, and death.


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