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Structure of the respiratory system:

(Picture from
http://www.google.co.uk/imgres?
imgurl=http://cmapspublic2.ihmc.us)

Nasal Cavity: The nose is split into the


external nose and internal nasal cavity,
When breathing in air enters the cavity
by passing the nostrils, Within the
nostrils hairs filter out dust and other
particles before the air passes into the
two passages of the nasal cavity. Then
the air is warmed up and moistened
before it passes into the nasopharynx. A
sticky mucous layer then traps smaller
foreign particles which small hairs
known as cilia transport to the pharynx
to be swallowed. Adams, Barker, Gledhill,
Lyndon, Mulligan, phillippo, Sutton (2010)

Epiglottis: This is a small flap of cartilage at the back of the tongue, the epiglottis
closes the top of the trachea when you swallow to ensure food and drink pass into
your stomach and not your lungs. Adams, Barker, Gledhill, Lyndon, Mulligan, phillippo,
Sutton (2010)

Pharynx: This is funnel shaped and connects the nasal cavity and mouth to the larynx
and oesophagus (the throat). The pharynx is a small tube that measures approximately
10-13cm from the base of the skull to the cervical vertebra. The muscular pharynx
wall is made of skeletal muscle throughout it all. This is a passageway for the food
and air to pass through. Adams, Barker, Gledhill, Lyndon, Mulligan, phillippo, Sutton
(2010)

Larynx: The windpipe marks the start of the lower respiratory system. It is around
12cm long by 2cm in diameter. The larynx travels down the neck in front of the
oesophagus and branches into the right and left bronchi. Adams, Barker, Gledhill,
Lyndon, Mulligan, phillippo, Sutton (2010)

Bronchus: The bronchi’s are situated in the left and right lung and are formed by the
division of the trachea. The role is to carry air to the lungs. The right bronchus is
shorter but wider than the left and is a more common place for foreign objects to get
lodged. Adams, Barker, Gledhill, Lyndon, Mulligan, phillippo, Sutton (2010)

Inside the lungs each bronchus divides into lobar bronchi: three on the right and two
on the left. These branch off into segmental bronchi which divide again into smaller
bronchi. Adams, Barker, Gledhill, Lyndon, Mulligan, phillippo, Sutton (2010)
Picture from
(healthguide.howstuffworks.com )
Lungs: The lungs are paired, the left
and the right, they occupy most of the
thoracic cavity and extend down to the
diaphragm. The lungs are situated in
the right and left cavity by the heart.
Adams, Barker, Gledhill, Lyndon,
Mulligan, phillippo, Sutton (2010)

Bronchioles: These are small airways


that are extended from the bronchi.
They are about 1mm in diameter and
are the first airway branches of the
respiratory system that do no contain
cartilage. The bronchioles end in
clusters of thin walled air sacs that are called alveoli. Adams, Barker, Gledhill, Lyndon,
Mulligan, phillippo, Sutton (2010)

Alveoli – Are little air sacs situated at the end of the bronchioles. There are 300
million gas filled alveoli in each lung, Adams, Barker, Gledhill, Lyndon, Mulligan,
phillippo, Sutton (2010) The alveoli are surrounded by capillaries this is so diffusion
can happen and oxygen can enter the blood and carbon dioxide leave the blood.

Lobes: Both lungs are divided into lobes, the right lung has three lobes and the left
which has two lobes. Adams, Barker, Gledhill, Lyndon, Mulligan, phillippo, Sutton (2010)

Pleural membrane and the cavity: The lungs are surrounded by membranes known as
the pleura. The pleura contain a cavity with fluid in that lubricate the pleural surfaces
as the lungs expand and contract. This means that friction can be prevented. Adams,
Barker, Gledhill, Lyndon, Mulligan, phillippo, Sutton (2010)

Pleura fluid- The pleural membrane produces pleural fluid which fills the space
between them. This fluid lubricates and allows the lung to glide easily over the
thoracic wall during respiration. Adams, Barker, Gledhill, Lyndon, Mulligan, phillippo,
Sutton (2010)

Thoracic cavity: The thoracic cavity is a chamber in the chest that is protected by a
wall. It is separated from the abdominal cavity by the diaphragm. Adams, Barker,
Gledhill, Lyndon, Mulligan, phillippo, Sutton (2010)

Diaphragm: The diaphragm separates the chest from the abdomen. It is the most
important muscle involved in the respiratory system. Contractions of the diaphragm
increases the size of the chest allowing air to be drawn into the lungs during
inspiration, whilst when the diaphragm decreases the air is pumped out of the lungs.
Adams, Barker, Gledhill, Lyndon, Mulligan, phillippo, Sutton (2010)

Visceral pleura- This is the innermost of pleural membranes. It covers the lung.

Internal intercostals muscles- Lie in-between the ribs, They help with inhalation and
exhalation.
These muscles are situated inside the ribcage. They make the ribs go downwards and
inwards. Adams, Barker, Gledhill, Lyndon, Mulligan, phillippo, Sutton (2010)

External intercostals muscles- These are situated outside the ribcage and pull the ribs
outwards and upwards. They help to increase the size of the chest and assist in
drawing air into the lungs. Adams, Barker, Gledhill, Lyndon, Mulligan, phillippo, Sutton
(2010)
Picture taken from http://www.google.co.uk/imgres green arrows show internal intercostals
muscles and yellow external intercostals ,muscles