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Chapter 11, MedTerms

The Respiratory System

TermDefinition
adenoids Lymphoid tissue located in the nasopharynx; the pharyngeal tonsils
alveoli The tiny air sacs in the lungs through which gases are exchanged between the atmosphere and the blood in respiration (singular: alveolus); an alveolus, in general, is a small hollow or cavity; the term also applies to the bony socket for a tooth
bronchiole One of the smaller subdivisions of the bronchial tubes (root: bronchiol/o)
bronchus One of the larger air passageways in the lungs; the bronchi begin as two branches of the trachea and then subdivide within the lungs (plural: bronchi) (root: bronch/o)
carbon dioxide (CO2) A gas produced by energy metabolism in cells and eliminated through the lungs
carbonic acid An acid formed when carbon dioxide dissolves in water; H2CO3
compliance A measure of how easily the lungs expand under pressure; compliance is reduced in many types of respiratory disorders
diaphragm The dome-shaped muscle under the lungs that flattens during inspiration (root: phren/o)
epiglottis A leaf-shaped cartilage that covers the larynx during swallowing to prevent food from entering the trachea
expectoration The act of coughing up material from the respiratory tract; also the material thus released; sputum
expiration The act of breathing out or expelling air from the lungs; exhalation
glottis The opening between the vocal folds
hemoglobin The iron-containing pigment in red blood cells that transports oxygen
inspiration The act of drawing air into the lungs; inhalation
larynx The enlarged, superior portion of the trachea that contains the vocal folds (root: laryng/o)
lingual tonsils Small mounds of lymphoid tissue at the posterior of the tongue
lung A cone-shaped, spongy respiratory organ contained within the thorax (roots: pneum/o, pulm/o)
mediastinum The space between the lungs together with the organs contained in this space
nose The organ of the face used for breathing and housing receptors for the sense of smell; includes an external portion and an internal nasal cavity (roots: nas/o, rhin/o)
oxygen (O2) The gas needed by cells to release energy from food during metabolism
palatine tonsils The paired masses of lymphoid tissue located on either side of the oropharynx; usually meant when the term tonsils is used alone
pharynx The throat; a common passageway for food entering the esophagus and air entering the larynx (root: pharyng/o)
phrenic nerve The nerve that activates the diaphragm (root: phrenic/o)
pleura A double-layered membrane that lines the thoracic cavity (parietal pleura) and covers the lungs (visceral pleura) (root: pleur/o)
pleural space The thin, fluid-filled space between the two layers of the pleura; pleural cavity
pulmonary ventilation The movement of air into and out of the lungs
sinus A cavity or channel; the paranasal sinuses are located near the nose and drain into the nasal cavity
sputum The substance released by coughing or clearing the throat; expectoration; it may contain a variety of materials from the respiratory tract
surfactant A substance that decreases surface tension within the alveoli and eases lung expansion
trachea The air passageway that extends from the larynx to the bronchi (root: trache/o)
turbinate bones The bony projections in the nasal cavity that contain receptors for the sense of smell; also called conchae (singular: concha)
vocal folds Membranous folds on either side of the larynx that are important in speech production; also called vocal cords
-pnea breathing
-oxia level of oxygen
-capnia level of carbon dioxide
-phonia voice
nas/o nose
rhin/o nose
pharyng/o pharynx
laryng/o larynx
trache/o trachea
bronch/o, bronch/i bronchus
bronchiol bronchiole
phren/o diaphragm
phrenic/o phrenic nerve
pleur/o pleura
pulm/o, pulmon/o lung
pneumon/o lung
pneum/o, pneumat/o air, gas; also respiration, lung
spir/o breathing
Streptococcus pneumoniae Most common cause of pneumonia; streptococcal pneumonia
Haemophilus influenzae Pneumonia, especially in debilitated patients
Klebsiella pneumoniae Pneumonia in elderly and debilitated patients
Mycoplasma pneumoniae Mild pneumonia, usually in young adults and children; "walking pneumonia"
Legionella pneumophila Legionellosis (Legionnaire disease); respiratory disease spread through water sources, such as air conditioners, pools, humidifiers
Chlamydia psittaci Psittacosis (ornithosis); carried by birds
Streptococcus pyogenes "Strep throat," scarlet fever
Mycobacterium tuberculosis Tuberculosis
Bordetella pertussis Pertussis (whooping cough)
Corynebacterium diphtheriae Diphtheria
Rhinoviruses Major cause of common cold; also caused by coronaviruses, adenoviruses, and others
Influenzavirus Influenza
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) Common cause of respiratory disease in infants
SARS coronavirus Severe acute respiratory syndrome; highly infectious disease that appeared in 2003 and spreads from small mammals to humans
Hantavirus Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS); spread by inhalation of virus released from dried rodent droppings
Histoplasma capsulatum Histoplasmosis; spread by airborne spores
Coccidioides immitis Coccidioidomycosis (valley fever, San Joaquin fever); found in dry, alkaline soilds
Blastomyces dermatitidis Blastomycosis; rare but often fatal fungal disease
Pneumocystis jirovecii (formerly carinii) Pneumocystis pneumonia (PCP); seen in immunocompromised hosts
tidal volume (TV) amount of air breathed into or out of the lungs in quiet, relaxed breathing
residual volume (RV) amount of air that remains in the lungs after maximum exhalation
expiratory reserve volume (ERV) amount of air that can be exhaled after a normal exhalation
inspiratory reserve volume (IRV) amount of air that can be inhaled above a normal inspiration
total lung capacity (TLC) total amount of air that can be contained in the lungs after maximum inhalation
inspiratory capacity (IC) amount of air that can be inhaled after normal exhalation
vital capacity (VC) amount of air that can be expelled from the lungs by maximum exhalation after maximum inhalation
functional residual capacity (FRC) amount of air remaining in the lungs after normal exhalation
forced expiratory volume (FEV) volume of gas exhaled with maximum force within a given interval of time; the time interval is shown as a subscript, such as FEV1 (one second) and FEV3 (three seconds)
forced vital capacity (FVC) the volume of gas exhaled as rapidly and completely as possible after a complete inhalation
acidosis Abnormal acidity of body fluids; respiratory acidosis is caused by abnormally high carbon dioxide levels
acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) Pulmonary edema that can lead rapidly to fatal respiratory failure; causes include trauma, aspiration into the lungs, viral pneumonia, and drug reactions; shock lung
acute rhinitis Inflammation of the nasal mucosa with sneezing, tearing, and profuse secretion of watery mucus, as seen in the common cold
alkalosis Abnormal alkalinity of body fluids; respiratory alkalosis is caused by abnormally low carbon dioxide levels
aspiration The accidental inhalation of food or other foreign material into the lungs; also means the withdrawal of fluid from a cavity by suction
asthma A disease characterized by dyspnea and wheezing caused by spasm of the bronchial tubes or swelling of their mucous membranes
atelectasis Incomplete expansion of a lung or part of a lung; lung collapse; may be present at birth (as in respiratory distress syndrome) or be caused by bronchial obstruction or compression of lung tissue (prefix atel/o means "imperfect")
bronchiectasis Chronic dilatation of a bronchus or bronchi
bronchitis Inflammation of a bronchus
chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) Any of a group of chronic, progressive, and debilitating respiratory diseases, which includes emphysema, asthma, bronchitis, and bronchiectasis
cyanosis Bluish discoloration of the skin caused by lack of oxygen in the blood (adjective: cyanotic)
cystic fibrosis (CF) An inherited disease that affects the pancreas, respiratory system, and sweat glands; characterized by mucus accumulation in the bronchi causing obstruction and leading to infection
diphtheria Acute infectious disease, usually limited to the upper respiratory tract, characterized by the formation of a surface pseudomembrane composed of cells and coagulated material
dyspnea Difficult or labored breathing, sometimes with pain; "air hunger"
emphysema A chronic pulmonary disease characterized by enlargement and destruction of the alveoli
empyema Accumulation of pus in a body cavity, especially the pleural space; pyothorax
hemoptysis The spitting of blood from the mouth or respiratory tract (ptysis means "spitting")
hemothorax Presence of blood in the pleural space
hydrothorax Presence of fluid in the pleural space
hyperventilation Increase in the rate and depth of breathing to above optimal levels, with blood carbon dioxide decreasing to levels below normal
hypoventilation Condition in which the amount of air entering the alveoli is insufficient to meet metabolic needs and blood carbon dioxide increases to levels above normal
influenza An acute, contagious respiratory infection causing fever, chills, headache, and muscle pain; "flu"
pertussis An acute, infectious disease characterized by a cough ending in a whooping inspiration; whooping cough
pleural effusion Accumulation of fluid in the pleural space; the fluid may contain blood (hemothorax) or pus (pyothorax or empyema)
pleurisy Inflammation of the pleura; pleuritis; a symptom of pleurisy is sharp pain on breathing
pneumoconiosis Disease of the respiratory tract caused by inhalation of dust particles; named more specifically by the type of dust inhaled, such as silicosis, anthracosis, asbestosis
pneumonia Inflammation of the lungs generally caused by infection; may involve the bronchioles and alveoli (bronchopneumonia) or one or more lobes of the lung (lobar pneumonia)
pneumonitis Inflammation of the lungs; may be caused by infection, asthma, allergy, or inhalation of irritants
pneumothorax Accumulation of air or gas in the pleural space; may result from injury or disease or may be produced artificially to collapse a lung
pyothorax Accumulation of pus in the pleural space; empyema
respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) A respiratory disorder that affects premature infants born without enough surfactant in the lungs; it is treated with respiratory support and surfactant administration
sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) The sudden and unexplained death of an apparently healthy infant; crib death
tuberculosis An infectious disease caused by the tubercle bacillus, Mycobacterium tuberculosis; often involves the lungs but may involve other parts of the body as well
arterial blood gases (ABGs) The concentrations of gases, specifically oxygen and carbon dioxide, in arterial blood; reported as the partial pressure (P) of the gas in arterial (a) blood, such as PaO2, or PaCO2; these measurements are important in measuring acid-base balance
bronchoscope An endoscope used to examine the tracheobronchial passageways. Also allows access for tissue biopsy or removal of a foreign object
lung scan, or pulmonary scintiscan Study based on the accumulation of radioactive isotopes in lung tissue; a ventilation scan measures ventilation after inhalation of radioactive material; a perfusion scan measures blood supply to the lungs after injection of radioactive material
pulse oximetry Determination of the oxygen saturation of arterial blood by means of a photoelectric apparatus (oximeter), usually placed on the finger or the ear; reported as SpO2, in percent
pulmonary function tests Tests done to assess breathing, usually by spirometry
spirometer An apparatus used to measure breathing volumes and capacities; record of test in a spirogram
thoracentesis Surgical puncture of the chest for removal of air or fluids, such as may accumulate after surgery or as a result of injury, infection, or cardiovascular problems; also called thoracocentesis
tuberculin test, or Mantoux test A skin test for tuberculosis; tuberculin (PPD), the test material made from products of the tuberculosis organism, is injected below the skin; a hard, raised lump appearing within 48 to 72 hours indicates an active or inactive TB infection
carina A projection of the lowest tracheal cartilage that forms a ridge between the two bronchi; used as a landmark for endoscopy; any ridge or ridge-like structure (from a Latin word that means "keel")
hyperpnea Increase in the depth and rate of breathing to meet the body's needs, as in exercise
hypopnea Decrease in the rate and depth of breathing
hilum An anatomic depression in an organ where vessels and nerves enter
nares The external openings of the nose; the nostrils (singular: naris)
nasal septum The partition that divides the nasal cavity into two parts (root sept/o means "septum")
tachypnea Excessive rate of breathing, which may be normal, as in exercise
anoxia Lack or absence of oxygen in the tissues; often used incorrectly to mean hypoxia
asphyxia Condition caused by inadequate intake of oxygen; suffocation (literally "lack of pulse")
Biot respirations Deep, fast breathing interrupted by sudden pauses; seen in spinal meningitis and other central nervous system disorders
bradypnea Abnormally slow rate of breathing
bronchospasm Narrowing of the bronchi caused by smooth muscle spasms; common in cases of asthma and bronchitis
Cheyne-Stokes respiration A repeating cycle of gradually increased and then decreased respiration followed by a period of apnea; caused by depression of the breathing centers in the brainstem; seen in cases of coma and in terminally ill patients
cor pulmonale Enlargement of the heart's right ventricle caused by disease of the lungs or pulmonary blood vessels
coryza Acute inflammation of the nasal passages with profuse nasal discharge; acute rhinitis
croup A childhood disease usually caused by a viral infection that involves upper airway inflammation and obstruction; croup is characterized by a barking cough, difficulty breathing, and laryngeal spasm
deviated septum A shifted nasal septum; may require surgical correction
epiglottitis Inflammation of the epiglottis that may lead to upper airway obstruction; commonly seen in croup (also spelled epiglottiditis)
epistaxis Hemorrhage from the nose; nosebleed (Greek: staxis means "dripping")
fremitus A vibration, especially as felt through the chest wall on palpation
Kussmaul respiration Rapid and deep gasping respiration without pause; characteristic of severe acidosis
pleural friction rub A sound heard on auscultation that is produced by the rubbing together of the two pleural layers; a common sign of pleurisy
rales Abnormal chest sounds heard when air enters small airways or alveoli containing fluid; usually heard during inspiration (singular: rale); also called crackles
rhonchi Abnormal chest sounds produced in airways with accumulated fluids, more noticeable during expiration (singular: rhonchus)
stridor A harsh, high-pitched sound caused by obstruction of an upper air passageway
tussis A cough; an antitussive drug is one that relieves or prevents coughing
wheeze A whistling or sighing sound caused by narrowing of a respiratory passageway
byssinosis Obstructive airway disease caused by reaction to the dust in unprocessed plant fibers
sleep apnea Intermittent periods of breathing cessation during sleep; central sleep apnea arises from failure of the brainstem to stimulate breathing; obstructive sleep apnea results from airway obstruction during deep sleep, as from obesity or enlarged tonsils
small cell carcinoma A highly malignant type of bronchial tumor involving small, undifferentiated cells; "oat cell" carcinoma
mediastinoscopy Examination of the mediastinum by means of an endoscope inserted through an incision above the sternum
plethysmograoph An instrument that measures changes in gas volume and pressure during respiration
pneumotachometer A device for measuring air flow
thoracoscopy Examination of the pleural cavity through an endoscope; pleuroscopy
aerosol therapy Treatment by inhalation of a drug or water in spray form
continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) Use of a mechanical respirator to maintain pressure throughout the respiratory cycle in a patient who is breathing spontaneously
extubation Removal of a previously inserted tube
intermittent positive pressure breathing (IPPB) Use of a ventilator to inflate the lungs at intervals under positive pressure during inhalation
intermittent positive pressure ventilation (IPPV) Use of a mechanical ventilator to force air into the lungs while allowing for passive exhalation
nasal cannula A two-pronged plastic device inserted into the nostrils for delivery of oxygen
orthopneic position An upright or semi-upright position that aids breathing
positive end-expiratory pressure (PEEP) Use of a mechanical ventilator to increase the volume of gas in the lungs at the end of exhalation, thus improving gas exchange
postural drainage Use of body position to drain secretions from the lungs by gravity; the patient is placed so that secretions will move passively into the larger airways for elimination
thoracic gas volume (TGV, VTG) The volume of gas in the thoracic cavity calculated from measurements made with a body plethysmograph
adenoidectomy Surgical removal of the adenoids
intubation Insertion of a tube into a hollow organ, such as into the larynx or trachea for entrance of air; patients may be intubated during surgery for administration of anesthesia or to maintain an airway
endotracheal intubation Insertion of a tube into a hollow organ, such as into the larynx or trachea for entrance of air; endotracheal intubation may be used as an emergency measure when airways are blocked
lobectomy Surgical removal of a lobe of the lung or of another organ
pneumoplasty Plastic surgery of the lung; in reduction pneumoplasty, nonfunctional portions of the lung are removed, as in cases of advanced emphysema
tracheotomy Incision of the trachea through the neck, usually to establish an airway in cases of tracheal obstruction
tracheostomy Surgical creation of an opening into the trachea to form an airway or to prepare for the insertion of a tube for ventilation; also the opening thus created
antihistamine Agent that prevents responses mediated by histamine, such as allergic and inflammatory reactions
antitussive Drug that prevents or relieves coughing
asthma maintenance drug Agent used to prevent asthma attacks and for chronic treatment of asthma
bronchodilator Drug that relieves bronchial spasm and widens the bronchi
corticosteroid Hormone from the adrenal cortex; used to reduce inflammation
decongestant Agent that reduces congestion or swelling
expectorant Agent that aids in removal of bronchopulmonary secretions
isoniazid (INH) Drug used to treat tuberculosis
leukotriene antagonist Drug that prevents or reduces inflammation by inhibiting leukotrienes, substances made in white blood cells that promote inflammation, constrict the bronchi, and increase mucus production; used in asthma treatment
mucolytic Agent that loosens mucus to aid in its removal
rifampin (rifampicin) Drug used to treat tuberculosis
ABG(s) Arterial blood gas(es)
AFB Acid-fast bacillus (usually Mycobacterium tuberculosis)
ARDS Acute respiratory distress syndrome; shock lung
ARF Acute respiratory failure
BCG Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (tuberculosis vaccine)
BS Breath sounds
C Compliance
CF Cystic fibrosis
CO2 Carbon dioxide
COPD Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
CPAP Continuous positive airway pressure
CXR Chest radiograph, chest x-ray
DTaP Diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (vaccine)
ERV Expiratory reserve volume
FEV Forced expiratory volume
FRC Functional residual capacity
FVC Forced vital capacity
HPS Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome
IC Inspiratory capacity
IGRA Interferon-gamma release assay (test for TB)
INH Isoniazid
IPPB Intermittent positive pressure breathing
IPPV Intermittent positive pressure ventilation
IRV Inspiratory reserve volume
LLL Left lower lobe (of lung)
LUL Left upper lobe (of lung)
MEFR Maximal expiratory flow rate
MMFR Maximum midexpiratory flow rate
NAA Nucleic acid amplification (test) (for TB)
O2 Oxygen
PaCO2 Arterial partial pressure of carbon dioxide
PaO2 Arterial partial pressure of oxygen
PCP Pneumocystis pneumonia
PEEP Positive end-expiratory pressure
PEFR Peak expiratory flow rate
PFT Pulmonary function test(s)
PIP Peak inspiratory pressure
PND Paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea
PPD Purified protein derivative (tuberculin)
R Respiration
RDS Respiratory distress syndrome
RLL Right lower lobe (of lung)
RML Right middle lobe (of lung)
RSV Respiratory syncytial virus
RUL Right upper lobe (of lung)
RV Residual volume
SARS Severe acute respiratory syndrome
SIDS Sudden infant death syndrome
SpO2 Oxygen percent saturation
T & A Tonsils and adenoids; tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy
TB Tuberculosis
TGV Thoracic gas volume
TLC Total lung capacity
TV Tidal volume
URI Upper respiratory infection
VC Vital capacity
VTG Thoracic gas volume
Created by: SeedyVampire