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Flashcards in The Respiratory System Deck (36)
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1

The Lungs 4 Functions

To extract O2 from the atmosphere and transfer it to the bloodstream in the lungs.
To excrete water vapour and CO2.
To maintain the normal acid-base balance of the blood.
To ventilate the lungs.

2

the exchange of gas occurs in 2 places

External respiration - in the lungs
Internal respiration - in the body tissues

3

process of gaseous exchange is called

diffusion - Movement from a high to low concentration.

4

External Respiration

the process of breathing where:
oxygen from inhaled air is absorbed into the blood via the capillaries of the lung.
CO2 is released from the blood into the lungs and is exhaled.

5

Internal Respiration

blood and the circulatory system carries O2 to the body cells. O2 is given off for use by the cells and CO2 is absorbed by the blood which is carried to the lungs.

6

2 respiratory movements

Inspiration - breathing in or inhalation
expiration - breathing out or exhalation

7

components of inspired air

O2 = 20%
Nitrogen = 79%
inert gas = 1%
CO2 = 0.04%
Water Vapour (variable)

8

components of expired air

O2 = 16%
Nitrogen = 79%
CO2 = 0.4% (100% increase)
Water Vapour (to saturation/100% increase)

9

17 components of the respiratory system

Nose
Mouth
Soft Palate
Pharynx
Epiglottis
Larynx
Trachea
Carina
Parietal Pleura
Serous Fluid
Visceral Pleura
right/left bronchus
Bronchi
Bronchioles
Alveolar Ducts
Alveoli
Diaphragm

10

Structure of the Lungs

2 Spongy, Cone shaped Organs.
Right has 3 lobes.
Left has 2 Lobes.

11

The Pleura

is a serous membrane that surrounds each lung.
it has 2 layers: Parietal and Visceral

12

normal breathing rate for an adult

16 to 24 BPM

13

normal breathing rate for infants and children

24 to 40 BPM dependant on age. younger = faster

14

factors that can Increase breathing rates

Exercise
Fever
Clinical Shock
Conditions affecting the lungs (pneumonia, bronchitis)

15

factors that can Decrease breathing rates

Conditions which affect the brain (CVA, head injury)
Certain drugs (Heroin, Methadone, Barbiturates)

16

Control of respiration - involuntary

rate & depth automatically controlled by the respiratory centre & various other receptors

17

Control of respiration - voluntary

concious control of breathing as in holding breath

18

Chemoreceptors

in the brain and aorta monitor levels of CO2 in the blood.
increase in CO2 = increase in breathing rate & depth

19

Dsypnoea

difficulty breathing

20

Apnoea

absence of breathing

21

Hypoxia

lack of O2 supplied to the tissues

22

Hypercarbia

too much CO2 in the blood

23

Obstructive Airways Diseases

Bronchitis
Emphysema
Asthma

24

Bronchitis - what is it?

inflammatory condition affecting the airways caused by viruses or bacteria.

usually a short lived infection

Common in young children and the elderly

25

Bronchitis - signs and Symptoms

Tachycardia (fast HR)
Tachypnoea (fast breathing)
Dyspnoea (Diff Breath)
Cyanosis (blue bloater)
Reduced O2 saturation (SpO2)
BP normal or slightly raised
Productive cough

26

Bronchitis - signs and Symptoms

Use of accessory muscles
Pupils may be dilated or slow to react
If hypoxia is severe LOC may be reduced
May be evidence of oedema (build up of fluid in tissue)
Auscultation (listening) usually reveals Rhonci ( coarse rattling) and wheezes

27

Emphysema - what is it?

distension of the alveoli
&
destructive changes in their membranes

28

Emphysema - signs and symptoms

usually thin
Tachycardia (fast HR)
Tachypnoea (fast breathing)
cardiac dysrhythmias (irregular heart beat)
Dyspnoea (diff breath)
skin colour usually normal (pink puffer)
use of accessory muscles
difficulty in exhaling
pursed lips on expiration

29

Emphysema - signs and symptoms

BP usually elevated
Cyanosis may be evident in acute attack
patient will appear to have have abnormally large chest (barrel chested)
Wheezing and crackles may be heard on auscultation - mainly on inspiration
possible evidence of oedema

30

Asthma - what is it?

A narrowing of the medium to smaller air passages due to muscle spasm.
Swelling and blockage by secretion of mucous from inflammatory cells.

31

Asthma - signs and symptoms

Tachypnoea
Dyspnoea, respiratory distress, cyanosis
sitting up, leaning forward, anxious
use of accessory muscles
usually and expiratory wheeze
difficulty exhaling
low peak flow reading

32

breathlessness/Dyspnoea

common symptom of respiratory disease including pneumonia, asthma and other COPDs
also common in non-respiratory conditions (cardiac failure, hypovolaemic shock)

33

breathlessness/Dyspnoea - management

Primary survey, provide O2 as appropriate
Position patient for comfort (usually sitting upright)
Evaluate whether any time critical features are present
peak flow

34

Hyperventilation - definition

A rate of ventilation higher than that required to maintain a normal level of plasma CO2

35

Hyperventilation - management

maintain a calm approach and manner at all times.
reassure the patient and try to remove the source of the patients anxiety if this is believed to be the cause of hyperventilation.
coach the patients respirations whilst maintaining a calm environment.

36

Hypoxic Drive

in patients with severe COPD the levels of CO2 in the blood is permanently raised.
They also have low levels of O2 in the blood (hypoxia) due to poor respiratory function.
As a result the respiratory centre in the brain utilises this hypoxia as the stimulus to breathe.