Print Friendly, PDF & Email

What is the significance of different sputum types?


Type Characteristics Associated pathology
Purulent Thick, yellow/green sputum Infectious – pneumonia, bronchiectasis and abscess
Mucoid Clear, grey/white Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma
Serous Clear, frothy, can be pink Pulmonary oedema
Blood Blood Malignancy, pulmonary embolus, clotting disorders, infection


Click here to learn how to do a full respiratory examination and here for other medical exams


Click here for medical student OSCE and PACES exam questions about the respiratory examination