The four components of examining the lungs of a patient include inspection, palpation, percussion, and auscultation. This chart will explain to you what to expect when you have consolidation, pleural effusion, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or pneumothorax.
A pulmonary consolidation is the solidification of the lung tissues when the lung tissue has been filled with liquid. By knowing this, you would expect to hear crackles.
Pleural effusion is the abnormal amount of fluid around the lungs. Because it’s around the lungs, you’d hear decreased breath sounds.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema, a chronic lung disease that causes dyspnea (difficulty breathing). You would expect to hear decreased breath sounds.
Pneumothorax is a collapsed lung. You would also expect decreased breath sounds due to the air leak into the space between the lungs and chest way.