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Lung Structure and Ventilation



passageways of bone in the nasal cavity that slow the flow of air and make it turbulent

conducting zone

portion of the respiratory system that carries air from the environment to the alveoli

cricoid cartilage

ring of cartilage around the trachea that provides the point of attachment for muscles involved in opening and closing the airway


skeletal muscle that separates the thoracic (chest) cavity from the abdominal (stomach) cavity; the muscle used for breathing


flap of cartilage that closes off the trachea (windpipe) when swallowing


normal, unlabored breathing


act of breathing out


portion of the larynx that contains the vocal cords and the opening between them


very fast breathing that results in expiring more carbon dioxide than normal


very slow breathing that results in expiring less carbon dioxide than normal


act of breathing in

nasal septum

wall of cartilage and bone that separates the right nostril from the left nostril

parietal pleura

outer membrane that forms one side of the pleural cavity; attached to the inner portion of the thoracic cavity


pair of serous membranes that line the thorax and the surface of the lungs

pleural fluid

contained within the pleural cavity and acts as a lubricant to enable the lungs to move during breathing

respiratory zone

zone involved in gas exchange; made up of the terminal bronchioles and alveoli


test that assesses how well the lungs work; measures the amount of air at rest and with forceful inspiration and expiration

thyroid cartilage

covers the front of the larynx at the point of the vocal cords

visceral pleura

inner membrane that forms one side of the pleural cavity; covers the outer surface of the lungs