Emergency room radiography of asthma: an efficacy study

Radiology. 1982 Oct;145(1):27-9. doi: 10.1148/radiology.145.1.7122890.


The chest radiographs of asthmatic patients in an emergency room setting over a four-year period were reviewed. A total of 997 radiographs was reviewed; radiographic findings were compared with history and clinical data. In adults 2.2% of the radiographs were abnormal; in children 13%. It is concluded that a chest radiograph in adults in unnecessary unless the patient is unresponsive to bronchodilators and is being admitted to the hospital. In children, however, if rales and rhonchi are present, in addition to wheezing, a chest radiograph may be useful.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Asthma / complications
  • Asthma / diagnostic imaging*
  • Child
  • Emergency Service, Hospital*
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Radiography
  • Respiratory System / diagnostic imaging*
  • Respiratory Tract Diseases / complications
  • Respiratory Tract Diseases / diagnosis
  • Respiratory Tract Diseases / diagnostic imaging