You are on page 1of 3

Anatomy Review Test 4 Part 3

Physiology of the Respiratory System

Respiratory Physiology
o External Respiration
 Pulmonary ventilation (breathing)
 Pulmonary gas exchange
o Transport of gases by the blood  CVS
o Internal respiration
 Systemic tissue gas exchange
 Cellular respiration
o Regulation of respiration

Pulmonary Ventilation
o Respiratory cycle (ventilation, breathing)
 Inspiration moves air into the lungs
 Expiration  moves are out of the lungs
o Mechanism of pulmonary ventilation
 Pulmonary ventilation mechanism must establish two gas
pressure gradients
 One in which the pressure within the alveoli of the lungs
is lower then the atmospheric pressure to produce
 One in which the pressure in the alveoli of the lungs is
higher then the atmospheric pressure to produce
 Pressure gradients are established by changes in the size of
thoracic cavity that are produced by concentration and
relaxation of muscles
 Inspiration- contraction of the diaphragm produces
inspiration- as it contracts, it makes the thoracic cavity larger
 Compliance- ability of pulmonary tissues to stretch, this
making inspiration possible
 Expiration- a passive process that begins when the inspiratory
muscles are relaxed, which decreases the size of the thorax
 Increasing thoracic volume increases the intrapleural
pressure and this increases alveolar pressure above the
atmospheric pressure
 Air moves out of the lungs when alveolar pressure
exceeds the atmospheric pressure
 Elactic Recoil- tendency of pulmonary tissues to return
to a smaller size after having been stretched occurs
passively during expiration

Pulmonary Capacities Alveolar ventilation- volume of inspired air that reaches
the alveoli
 Anatomical dead space- passageways occupied by air
that does not participate in gas exchange
 Physiological dead space- anatomical dead space plus
any alveoli not able to perform gas exchange (as in
pulmonary disease)
 Alveoli must be properly ventilated for adequate gas
Pulmonary Airflow
 Forced expiratory volume (FEV) or forced vital capacity
(FVC)- volume of air expired per second during forced
expiration (as a percentage of VC)

Pulmonary Gas Exchange
o Exchange of gases in the lungs- takes place between alveolar air and
blood flowing through lung capillaries
 Four factors determine the amt of oxygen that diffuses into the
 The oxygen pressure gradient between alveolar air and
 The total functional surface area of the respiratory
 The respiratory minute volume
 Alveolar Ventilation

How Blood Transports Gases
o Oxygen and carbon dioxide are transported as solutes and as parts of
molecules of certain chemical compounds
o Transport of carbon dioxide
 A small amount of CO2 dissolves in plasma and is transported
as a solute (10%)
 Less than one-fourth of blood carbon dioxide combines with
NH2 (amine) groups of hemoglobin and other protiens to form
 Carbon dioxide’s association with hemoglobin is accelerated by
an increase in blood PO2
 More than two-thirds of the carbon dioxide is carried in plasma
as bicarbonate ions (HCO3-)

Systemic Gas Exchange
o Exchange of gases in tissue takes place between arterial blood flowing
through tissue capillaries and cells

Regulation of Pulmonary Function
o Respiratory control centers- the main integrators controlling the
nerves that affect the inspiratory and expiratory muscles are located
in the brainstem
o Arterial blood PO2 presumably has little influence if it stays above a
certain level