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Respiratory Alterations

Updated on October 17, 2009
Let the air in this place be breathe by everyone
Let the air in this place be breathe by everyone

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:

      small airways

      fewer alveoli

      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.



  1. Pale

  2. increased rate of respiration

  3. dyspnea              

  4. stridor,wheezing, or crackles on auscultation

  5. fever
  6. cough

  7. nasal discharge or blocked nasal passage

  8. sore throat

  9. anorexia

  10. vomiting and diarrhea

  11. anxious care givers

  12. fatigue and lethargy



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      Cid Rusiana 9 years ago from Cebu.Philippines

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