As a future surgery resident, I know it's surgical dogma that atelectasis causes fever, but evidence has been shown for at least 30 years that this simply is not true. Take a look at the following reference:
"Lack of Association Between Atelectasis and Fever" Chest 1995, 107: 81-84.
Agreed Rich. And as a resident, I'm sure when the nurse bugs me about post-op fever, I'll throw out the IS or have them cough or anything else to get the nurse off my back. But it's b/c I am just trying to pacify the nurse, not b/c I actually think that the atelectasis is causing fever. You and I both know that the fever is likely benign, but since we have to come up with a response for hte nurse, I don't mind pacifying her for the time being, even though I know IS is a futile exercise and uneeded expense.