Mechanism of Breathing

Remember to follow along in your workbook to get the most out of this course!

Learning objectives

By the end of this module, you should be able to...

  • Define Boyle’s law and understand how it applies to breathing
  • Identify and define the different pressures that control breathing
  • List the events that take place during inhalation and exhalation
  • Define the Hering Breur reflex and the part it plays in preventing lung injury
  • Define and Identify the different lung volume measurements

High Yield Content

  • Boyle’s law: volume of gas is inversely proportional to pressure
  • Gases flow from areas of high pressure to areas of low pressure
  • When atmospheric pressure exceeds intrathoracic pressure, air flows into the lung
  • When intrathoracic pressure exceeds atmospheric pressure, air flow out of the lungs
  • Hering-Breuer reflex prevents overinflation of lungs during inahlation
  • CO2 is the main chemical that stimulates respiration (NOT O2!!)
  • Normal tidal volume = 500ml