airway obstruction

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Blockage of any of the passages by which air enters (and leaves) the lungs, which may be partial or complete. In partial obstruction, the patient can still move some air in and out of the lungs but often with difficulty. There may be a distinctive sound (see stridor) on inspiration through a partly obstructed airway. Complete obstruction will rapidly lead to respiratory and then cardiac arrest and requires prompt airway clearance and support.

Subjects: Medicine and Health.

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