Respiratory Alterations Part 1
Function - facilitate gas exchange in the body.
Respiratory system dysfunction is a frequent health concern. Particularly infants and young children who are vulnerable to respiratory related disease.
Anatomy and Physiology
Developmental variation that increases the pediatric population at risk for acquiring respiratory system dysfunction:
increased chest compliance
Size of an infants trachea and lower airways are smaller than an adult airways. Even small reduction in the lumen can significantly increase airway resistance and the work of breathing.
The infants and the young childs Nose, nasopharynx and pharynx are also smaller and more vulnerable to OBSTRUCTION. Infants are nose breathers. This causes them to have difficulty in breathing.
Limited alveolar surface for gas exchange.
Chest wall is soft and pliable and the infants respiratory muscle are under developed
Leads to poor expansion of the chest and decreased lung volumes at the end of the exhalation.
RETRACTION- inward motion of the muscle of the chest wall during inspiration. When infants in distress attempt to increase lung volumes, their pliable chest wall moves inward instead of expanding. Associated in increased respiratory effort and obstruction.
THE CHILD WITH RESPIRATORY DIFFICULTY STANDARD ASSESSMENT
- increased rate of respiration
- stridor,wheezing, or crackles on auscultation
- nasal discharge or blocked nasal passage
- sore throat
- vomiting and diarrhea
- anxious care givers
- fatigue and lethargy
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