(2) Percussion is used during physical assessment to determine fluid
content in the abdomen, the lungs, and other body parts.
Percussion can be a difficult skill to master, it requires a great deal of practice
PROCEDURES TO PERFORM A PHYSICAL ASSESSMENT
a. Primary Survey. This is the first step taken to perform a patient assessment.
It is done to detect life-threatening problems and if any problems are detected,
lifesaving measures should be taken immediately. You will be concerned with the
following areas in performing a primary survey.
(1) Level of consciousness. Remember that consciousness may be lost
quickly, breathing may change, and circulation may stop. Shake the patient at his
shoulders and shout to him, "Are you okay?"..."Are you okay?"..."Are you okay?"...Ask
the patient what is his name? What is today's date? These questions are asked to
check the patient's orientation.
(2) Patient airway. Check for an opened airway. If the patient's airway is
closed, you should open it with manual maneuvers.
(a) Head tilt-chin lift. This technique provides a consistently more
effective method of opening the airway in the unconscious patient and is less tiring than
other methods. (See figure 1-1.)
Figure 1-1. Head tilt-chin lift.
(b) Jaw thrust. This technique is the safest first approach to opening
the airway of a patient who has a suspected neck injury; in most cases, it can be
accomplished without extending the neck. (See figure 1-2.)