Phone 212-263-7951 Fax 212-263-0462
Francis V. Adams, M.D.
Francis V. Adams, M.D.

About Your Lungs

Breathing for most of us is something we do without being aware of it. We pay no attention to this continuous activity as play, sleep, or we work. During a normal day, we breathe nearly 25,000 times.

The inside of the lungs looks like a giant pink sponge. Each lung is a mass of fine tubes, the smallest of which end in tiny air sacs. These air sacs are called alveoli and there are over 200 million or so of them in the lungs. If they were spread out they would cover a piece of ground roughly the size of a football field.

The alveoli provide the surface for the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide between the body and the environment. The alveoli have very thin walls, which are crisscrossed with very tiny blood vessels called capillaries.
recommended reading
These articles provide in-depth information and are written to help you make the best healthcare decisions for you and your loved ones.
How Your Lungs Work

Smoking Cessation

Respiratory Problems, Age 11 and Younger

Respiratory Problems, Age 12 and Older

tests & procedures

You doctor may recommend one or more of the following tests to evaluate your condition.

Chest X-Ray
CT Scan
History and Physical Examination for COPD
History and Physical Exam for Lung Cancer
Home Lung Function Testing
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
Sleep Studies

For other tests and diagnostic procedures use the section of this site called Medical Tests A to Z .

What is a Pulmonologist?
Chest Pain
medication center
medication assistance

This section provides you with an alphabetical listing of more than 1,000 medications, including prescription drugs and those you can purchase over-the-counter. Just "click on" your medications to learn what they are used for, how to take them, special precautions, and some of the possible side effects. You can choose your medication by brand name or generic name.

Medications A-Z

If you are having difficulty paying for your medications you may qualify for financial assistance or free medications. Visit the Medication Assistance Center to learn about available medication and insurance programs.

Don't let financial problems stop you from getting the treatment you need; there are resources and organizations that may be able to help you.

additional resources

This listing provides you with Internet sites that are sponsored by government agencies or are well-known and credible national organizations.

American Lung Association

Kids Health

MEDLINEplus—Lungs and Breathing Topics

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)

Your Lung Health—American Association for Respiratory Care

Surfing the Internet
When looking at Internet sites, remember that the information can be sponsored by anyone. Take into account the sponsoring group or individual when gathering information or help. Be especially careful about giving out personal or financial information.

Learn more about surfing the web:

Last modified on: 30 June 2015