lung sounds with vent

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    When I listened all I could hear was the vent pushing the air in. It kind of reminded me of watching a war movie and hearing rapid gunshots firing in the background. I couldn't really hear anything else besides that loud noise. Is it possible to hear regular or adventitious lung sounds when the vent is running? Does it just take practice? Any audio files online to listen to help become more familiar with this situation?

    The client also has the ability to frog-breathe for a little bit (diaphragm muscle has atrophied) and I listened to that while being off the vent and it sounded very faint to me, just like wisps of air, yet O2 sats are still good, is that expected or do I need to listen better?

    I plan on asking the client's longtime nurse about this but was wondering what any pulmonary nurses had to say. Thank you!
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  4. 3 Comments so far...

  5. 0
    You can usually hear the different breath sounds with a vent. I don't know the circumstances, but rapid gunshots arn't normal vent sounds. I think you were probably hearing circuit noise. perhaps there was water in it?
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    dmc/rrt is probably right, sounds like water in the circuit.

    I'm sure you know this already, but make sure your stethescope tubing isn't touching the circuit at all and the "vent pushing the air in" is the breath sound.

    you should be able to hear any adventitious sound because it's the passage of the air through the bronchi that makes rales, wheezes, rhonchi, etc. i know it's difficult sometimes, we all have a hard time hearing it occasionally but listen carefully and maybe even listen to another vented patient that's wheezing, rhonchi, etc so you'll have something to compare it to.
  7. 0
    Best thing to do if you want to get a good listen with out all the "extra" sounds:

    Take the patient off the vent. Attach the bag and give a few breaths while listening.

    Kinda a hassle but if its a situation where you really need to hear then its a handy trick.

    Heard this at a recent T and V seminar I went to by the PA dept of Health.


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