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Pulmonary Ventilation

air movement in and out of lungs; breathing

External respiration

movement of O2 from lungs to blood, and CO2 from blood to lungs; exchange of gases to outside of the body

Respiratory gas transfer

transport of gases to and from tissues through blood

Internal respiration

movement of blood to tissues, and CO2 from cells to blood; exchange of gases inside the body

oral pharynx

the area right behind the uvula


back portion of the nasal cavity


right behind the epiglottis and above the glottis

Type I cells

flat large squamous cells making up walls of respiratory structures. Supported by their basement membrane. Because it is so thin, diffusion of gases between air and blood can occur

Type II cells

Green fluffy cells of the respiratory system that produce surfactant

Bronchopulmonary segments

subdivisions of each lobe of the lungs. Each has its own artery and vein, own bronchial supply

Pulmonary circulation

brings deoxygenated systemic blood to lungs to get O2. Consists of pulmonary arteries, capillaries in alveoli, and pulmonary veins returned O2 blood to heart

Bronchial circulation

separate set of vessels to nourish the tissue. Bronchiole arteries supplies blood to the lung. Pulmonary veins return the blood given to the lungs by the bronchial arteries.

Atmospheric pressure (Patm)

pressure exerted by air surrounding the body; 760mmHg (1 atm)

Intrapulmonary pressure (Ppul)

air pressure in alveoli. Changes are we breathe

Intrapleural pressure (Pip)

air pressure in pleural cavity - between lungs and rib cage.

Transpulmonary pressure

difference between Intrapleural pressure and intrapulmonary pressure, usually 4mmHg


a collapsed lung. Can be caused by plugged airways, like in pneumonia with mucous plugging the airway.


a disruption in transpulmonary pressure causing a lung collapse. Can occur from chest wound putting higher pressure in the pleural cavity. Treat by closing the wound and using a chest tube to restore pressure.

tidal volume

amount of air moving into the lungs, usually 500mL

Lung compliance

ability of lungs to expand

Dalton's Law of Partial Pressures

total pressure exerted by a mixture of gases is the sum of the pressures exerted independently by each gas in the mixture.

Henry's Law

when a mixture of gases is in contact with a liquid, each gas will dissolve in the liquid in proportion to its partial pressure

Partial Pressure of oxygen in the blood


Partial Pressure of oxygen in the alveoli



amount of gas reaching the alveoli


amount of blood flowing though the pulmonary capillaries to the alveoli.


binding of oxygen to hemoglobin


release of oxygen from hemoglobin

Level Hemoglobin saturation will stop increasing



general term for inadequate O2 delivery to the tissues. When hemoglobin saturation is below 75%, the skin will become cyanotic, particularly under fingernails

Anemia hypoxia

type of hypoxia; poor O2 delivery from too few RBCs or abnormal/too little hemoglobin

Ischemic hypoxia

type of hypoxia; impaired circulation leads to low O2. Can be due to CHF (systemic) or localized (clots)

Histotoxic hypoxia

type of hypoxia; cells are unable to use O2, even though an adequate amount is being delivered. Can occur as a result of poison

Hypoxemic hypoxia

results from low partial pressure of oxygen in the arteries. Not enough oxygen is getting in the body, or cells are not picking it up

Carbon Monoxide poisoning

Leading cause of death from fires. Very competitive with O2 for binding to hemoglobin. Doesn't produce typical hypoxia symptoms - no cyanosis or respiratory distress. Instead it presents with confusion, throbbing HA, turns Hb cherry red. Treat by flushing CO out of the system with hyperbaric chambers, O2 therapy.

Ventral Respiratory Group (VRG)

In the medulla; primary rhythm generator for the respiratory system. Contains neurons that fire to control inspiration, and neurons to inhibit those in expiration


Normal respiration rate; 12-15 breaths/min

Pontine Respiratory Centers

fine tune breathing rhythm, smooth transitions from inspiration is prolonged and pauses, apneustic breathing

Central chemoreceptors

regulate respiration; located in the medulla

Peripheral chemoreceptors

regulate respiration; located in aorta and carotid arteries


elevated CO2


increase in rate and depth of breathing. You exceed body's normal need to remove CO2, which will drop. In panic and stress, you get dizzy and feel faint because you are not getting enough blood to the brain, and the brain wants you to lay down to get more blood


too little CO2 in blood. Body's response is to constrict cerebro blood vessels, reducing perfusion (blood flow) to the brain, aka cerebral ischemia. Breathe into a bag to bring CO2 levels back up to restore cerebral perfusion. You could also breathe slowly, hold breath, and exhale

Squamous cell carcinoma

25-30% of all cases of lung cancer, associated with the lining of the bronchi


40% of all cases of lung cancer, most common, originates in peripheral lung areas - outer regions. Develops in bronchial glands of alveoli.

Small cell carcinoma

20% of all cases, originates bear bronchi, grows aggressively. Invades mediastinum, spreading is likely. Surgical removal is the first treatment. If metastasized, use radiation or chemo, survival rate is still poor.

Cystic Fibrosis

genetic condition; produces sticky and viscous mucous in the lungs, making it a breeding ground for bacteria, which release toxins, leading to inflammation and chronic damage. Pancreatic duct also gets clogged by mucous, preventing enzymes from reaching pancreas and movement of bile

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