Pneumonia (as cause of Dyspnea)

Suspect in patients with fever & cough.  Physical Exam: Focal rales (inspiratory crackles).

Chest x-ray is sensitive for the diagnosis; rare false-negatives in the first 24 hours.

But specificity is not guaranteed; small infarctions from PE’s can mimic pneumonia.  Be cautious diagnosing pneumonia in the absence of cough and fever, unless the infiltrate is large, or the patient debilitated.

See postings Acute Dyspnea – 3, Acute Cough -2, and Chest Pain – 2.