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Matt B.

Hyperventilation question

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My EMT instructor was going over questions for the upcoming test the other day and he gave us this one:

1) Which of the following statements about hyperventilation is false?

a. Hyperventilation is almost always due to psychogenic stress.

b. Hyperventilation frequently causes numbness and or tingling and spasms in the hands and fingers.

c. Hyperventilation may be a sign of head injury or diabetic problem or overdose.

d. Psychogenic hyperventilation rarely causes cyanosis.

He claimed that he thought the correct answer was C but after going over my notes it seems like the answer should be A. Could I get your opinion on this? Which answer do you think is right?

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My EMT instructor was going over questions for the upcoming test the other day and he gave us this one:

1) Which of the following statements about hyperventilation is false?

a. Hyperventilation is almost always due to psychogenic stress.

b. Hyperventilation frequently causes numbness and or tingling and spasms in the hands and fingers.

c. Hyperventilation may be a sign of head injury or diabetic problem or overdose.

d. Psychogenic hyperventilation rarely causes cyanosis.

He claimed that he thought the correct answer was C but after going over my notes it seems like the answer should be A. Could I get your opinion on this? Which answer do you think is right?

I'm with you on this. It sounds like it should be A as well from what my brain can pull up. I"ll look when I get home and double check.

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Its the "almost always" part that throws you off because hyperventilation is commonly caused by stress and anxiety but not always. Answer C doesn't seem right because I believe a patient can hyperventilate from a head injury or diabetic emergency

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D is the answer.

My EMT instructor was going over questions for the upcoming test the other day and he gave us this one:

1) Which of the following statements about hyperventilation is false?

a. Hyperventilation is almost always due to psychogenic stress. *It almost always is* therefore this is TRUE

b. Hyperventilation frequently causes numbness and or tingling and spasms in the hands and fingers. Carpopedal spasms are very common, therefore this is TRUE

c. Hyperventilation may be a sign of head injury or diabetic problem or overdose. Yes, this is TRUE as well.

d. Psychogenic hyperventilation rarely causes cyanosis. ****DIng DIng DINg..this one here...right here...this one is FALSE!!!

Therefore, D is the correct answer because hyperventilating patients RARELY have cyanosis.

(Bolded parts by AK)

He claimed that he thought the correct answer was C but after going over my notes it seems like the answer should be A. Could I get your opinion on this? Which answer do you think is right?

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Its the "almost always" part that throws you off because hyperventilation is commonly caused by stress and anxiety but not always. Answer C doesn't seem right because I believe a patient can hyperventilate from a head injury or diabetic emergency

ummm yes they do...

DKA (Diabetic ketoacidosis) is a form of metabolic acidosis which leads to a respiratory attempt at reducing this via blowing off CO2 (hyperventilating) as it is acidic. This breathing pattern is specifically known as Kussmaul breathing.

Head Injury is often found using Cushings triad. A triad of three baselines which indicate the injury. One of the three is irregular breathing which could manifest as hyperventilation.

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d. Psychogenic hyperventilation rarely causes cyanosis. ****DIng DIng DINg..this one here...right here...this one is FALSE!!!

Therefore, D is the correct answer because hyperventilating patients RARELY have cyanosis.

You confuse me because the option D says RARELY causes cyanosis... and you reiterate that in you therefore.... but wouldn't that then be a true statement and therefore be incorrect as the question posed requested the student to pick out the false answer...?

I may just be the dumb blonde here but I think you are wrong?

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Ak, cyanosis is caused by lack of oxygenated blood circulating, when a person has hyperventilation, they have too much O2 in their system do they not? there fore would not have Cyanosis.

I am going for the majority vote on this one, it is more than likely A as that is my first instinct response.

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When we hyperventilate, we breathe rapidly. We breathe so fast we can't get full tidal volume into our lungs. We breathe in a small out of o2 and retain more CO2, thus making us more acidiotic. Having more co2 and less o2 in your system being circulated, will lead to cyanosis, which is a lack of oxygen.

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Why does your instructor not know the answer to the question? He should know the answer to these types of questions if he is going to ask you these types of questions.

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