a. Signs/Symptoms of Subcutaneous Emphysema. The signs and
symptoms include the following:
(1) Soft-tissue crepitus. As you feel over the area of the fracture with your
fingertips, you will feel skin that seems like rice krispies.
Occasionally, you will hear crackling sounds when you auscultate the
b. Treatment of Subcutaneous Emphysema. To treat subcutaneous
emphysema, you should:
(1) Determine the underlying injury--fractured rib, lung laceration, etc.--and
treat the injury.
Have the casualty rest.
(4) Administer oxygen. If you use the highest concentration possible, you
may reduce the signs and symptoms.
1-12. OPEN PNEUMOTHORAX
Open pneumothorax, also called sucking chest wound, occurs as a result of an
external penetrating trauma such as a shotgun wound at close range. The gunshot
lacerates (tears) the flesh leaving an open wound. The open wound allows air to enter
the chest cavity through the wound each time the casualty inhales and the chest
expands in the normal respiratory cycle. In this situation, the air remains outside the
lung in the pleural space. When the casualty exhales, air goes back outside through the
wound. The lung, due to air in the pleural space, has not been able to fill and function
a. Signs/Symptoms of Open Pneumothorax.
Bloody froth in the wound when the casualty breathes out.
A sucking sound at the wound site each time the casualty breathes in.