Cari's Story

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Question A: How could an infection in Cari’s nasal passages and pharynx spread into her sinuses? The infection spreads because the pharynx, sinuses, larynx, and trachea are all connected and the infection is prone to spread to the surrounding areas. Question B: What is the cough reflex? Describe the process that Cari’s respiratory system is using to clear her lungs by coughing. The cough reflex is a long and deep inhalation followed by the closing of the glottis, this causes a strong exhalation that pushes the glottis open and sends air through the respiratory passages. Coughing can occur when a foreign body is located in the larynx, trachea or epiglottis. Cari is coughing due to the mucus and fluid buildup in her lungs and her body is trying to expel it. Question C: Which structures found in the terminal bronchioles and alveoli normally would protect Cari’s lungs from infectious pathogens and particulate matter? Alveolar macrophage protects her lungs by wondering around the alveoli space collecting dust, particles and debris. Cari is a smoker and this has caused the cilia in her respiratory passages to become paralyzed and secrete excess amounts of mucus. Macrophages are being sent to her lungs and is getting stuck in the mucus instead of fighting off pathogens. Question D: How would the resistance of Cari’s airways be affected by excess mucus and fluid in her lung? She is having an issue with getting adequate oxygen because of the pressure of fluid and mucus buildup in her longs and is therefore, not allowing her lungs to fully expand to get the quality of breath her body needs. The fluid buildup is causing pressure and is blocking oxygen from dispersing to the appropriate areas, therefore she would have to enforce more effort to get a full breath. Question E: How would Cari’s lung compliance (the effort required to expand the lungs) be altered as her

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