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A 27-year-old man presents to the emergency department after a motor vehicle accident. He was the unrestrained driver in a head-on collision. The patient is currently unresponsive and his clothes are soaked in blood. The patient is breathing on his own and grimaces in response to pain. His temperature is 99.5°F (37.5°C), blood pressure is 90/60 mmHg, pulse is 130/min, respirations are 19/min, and oxygen saturation is 95% on room air. The patient is started on intravenous fluids. A FAST exam is negative for signs of intra-abdominal trauma. A chest radiograph is within normal limits. Lacerations on the patient’s chest, back, and head are repaired, and the patient is given blood products. Repeat vitals reveal a blood pressure of 110/70 mmHg and a pulse of 90/min. The patient is observed in the trauma bay. Five hours later, his temperature is 99.5°F (37.5°C), blood pressure is 115/75 mmHg, pulse is 85/min, respirations are 23/min, and oxygen saturation is 84% on room air. A chest radiograph is ordered as seen in Figure A. An arterial blood gas is performed and reveals the findings below.Gases, arterial blood:pH: 7.56PCO2: 23 mmHgPO2: 70 mmHgWhich of the following is the best next step in management?
Needle decompression in the second intercostal space
Placement of a chest tube
Sputum culture followed by IV antibiotics
Intercostal nerve block
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