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Drowning (cont.)

Dry Drowning vs. Wet Drowning

In the drowning sequence, laryngeal spasm occurs by water entering the upper airways. In most drowning cases, the spasm relaxes and water enters the lungs. Historically, this was known as a wet drowning. In 10% to 20% of drowning cases, the laryngeal spasm does not relax and no water enters. This was known as dry drowning. It is now felt that there is no clinical difference between wet and dry drowning and the distinction does not affect patient treatment or outcome.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/7/2014

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