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Laplace’s Law Essay

775 words - 4 pages

The way our body works is an amazing thing. Millions of different actions come together so that our bodies can function the way that they do. If you really think about it, it is amazing how we can survive day to day. There are certain laws and forces that are the reason behind the human body can function as efficiently as it does. Gas laws help us understand certain aspects of human anatomy such as pressure. Laplace’s Law is one gas law that helps explain distending pressures within the body.
Terry Jardins explained in his book, Cardiopulmonary Anatomy & Physiology Essentials of respiratory care that “Laplace’s law describes how the distending pressure of a liquid bubble is influenced by ...view middle of the document...

” Surface tension forces will apply to the alveoli because they have a liquid lining. We can apply this to respiratory therapy because in cases of pulmonary edema, the greater the pressure of the liquid the greater the force inside the alveoli will be. This could lead to collapse of the alveoli (Gardenhire).
As stated previously the human anatomy is an amazing and complex work of art. Laplace’s law helps us to understand just a small part of how the human body works. It is now understood that Laplace’s law can be applied to the lungs because the alveoli are in constant contact causing them to have only one surface area. Also in the case of pulmonary edema, the pressure of the liquid outside of the alveoli will cause greater pressure within the alveoli which can cause then to collapse.
Summary
In our Anatomy textbook Laplace’s law describes how the distending pressure of a liquid bubble is influenced by (1) the surface tension of the bubble and (2) the size of the bubble itself. If the sphere only has one liquid-gas interface then the equation is written as P= 2ST/r .In this equation P represents the pressure difference which will be measured in dynes/cm2. ST...

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