Breath Sounds pp 207-223 | Cite as

Wheezing as a Respiratory Sound

  • Grigorios Chatziparasidis
  • Kostas N. Priftis
  • Andrew Bush


The auscultation of breathing sounds dates back to the years of Hippocrates and was revolutionized after the invention of the stethoscope by Läennec in 1816. Wheezing was amongst the five different types of respiratory sounds described by Läennec. His original description was “the whistling of little birds”. Interestingly, whereas the roentgenogram when discovered verified the accuracy of the stethoscopic findings in many cases, this was not the case for wheeze. Subsequently the value of wheezing as a clinical finding was confirmed by lung function studies, in particular spirometry. It was more a physics-based approach that allowed the understanding of how wheeze is produced and clinical meaning of the noise.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Grigorios Chatziparasidis
    • 1
  • Kostas N. Priftis
    • 1
  • Andrew Bush
    • 2
    • 3
    • 4
  1. 1.Children’s Respiratory and Allergy Unit, Third Department of Paediatrics, “Attikon” HospitalNational and Kapodistrian University of AthensAthensGreece
  2. 2.Imperial CollegeLondonUK
  3. 3.National Heart and Lung InstituteLondonUK
  4. 4.Royal Brompton Harefield NHS Foundation TrustLondonUK

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