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Injury Definitions

Respiratory Injuries

The respiratory system is made up of a number of parts that start at the mouth and the nose and end with the alveoli in our lungs, where oxygen and carbon dioxide are exchanged with the capillaries in the vascular system. When we breathe, the air enters our mouth and/or nose, passes through the nasal passages and the pharynx, down the larynx and the trachea to the lungs. The trachea splits near the bottom into the primary bronchi, which enter the lungs. The primary bronchi then divide into the secondary bronchi, which divide more into bronchioles which keep dividing into alveolar ducts which finally contain the alveoli.

There are many medical conditions that can affect the respiratory system and how we breathe, from the common cold all the way to lung cancer. Some are caused by common viral infections such as the flu or respiratory syncytial virus, which is known as RSV. Others are the result of chronic conditions such as asthma, allergies and cystic fibrosis. Treatment depends on the nature of the respiratory illness, and can range from medication to surgery.

For related information go to: Hospital Injuries, Infection, Insurance Bad Faith and Medical Malpractice.

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