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Chest, Mnemonics

Unilateral Hyperlucent Hemithorax Mnemonic – CRAWLS

This mnemonic is commonly used to recall the differential diagnosis of a unilateral hyperlucent hemithorax:

C – contralateral lung has increased density or opacity (such as posterior layering of a pleural effusion in the supine patient)
R – rotation of the patient causing less attenuation of the x-ray beam
A – air (pneumothorax)
W – wall (chest wall, poland syndrome, mastectomy)
L – lungs (airway obstruction, emphysema, swyer-james syndrome, large bullae, large embolus)
S – scoliosis

Read about the differential diagnosis of a unilateral opaque hemithorax (or “white out”) here.


About radiologypics

I am a radiology physician from California, USA.


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