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1. either one of a pair of spongy saclike respiratory organs within the thorax of higher vertebrates, which oxygenate the blood and remove its carbon dioxide
2. any similar or analogous organ in other vertebrates or in invertebrates
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005


Paired, air-filled respiratory sacs, usually in the anterior or anteroventral part of the trunk of most tetrapods. They lie within the coelom and are covered by peritoneum. In mammals they are within special chambers of the coelom known as pleural cavities and the peritoneum is termed pleura.

Amphibian lungs are often simple sacs, with only small ridges on the internal walls. In higher forms the lungs become more and more subdivided internally, thus increasing greatly the surface areas across which the respiratory exchange takes place. However, even in many reptiles the lungs may be quite simple. Birds have especially complex lungs with a highly differentiated system of tubes leading into and through them to the air sacs which are contained in many parts of the bird's body. Mammalian lungs are simpler, but in them the internal subdivision into tiny sacs or alveoli is extreme; there may be over 350,000,000 of them in one human lung.

In humans the two lungs lie within the chest, separated by the heart and mediastinum. The right lung has three lobes and the left lung two. A bronchus, an artery, and a vein enter each lung medially at the hilum; each branches again and again as it enters the lobules and smaller divisions of the lungs (see illustration). The terminal airways or bronchioles expand into small clusters of grapelike air cells, the alveoli. The alveolar walls consist of a single layer of epithelium and collectively present a huge surface. A small network of blood capillaries in the walls of the alveoli affords surfaces for the actual exchange of gases. See Respiration, Respiratory system

The human lungenlarge picture
The human lung
McGraw-Hill Concise Encyclopedia of Bioscience. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


Either of the paired air-filled sacs, usually in the anterior or anteroventral part of the trunk of most tetrapods, which function as organs of respiration.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Causes of respiratory distress in neonates presented on CXR (1,3,4,6,7) Term neonate Premature neonate CXR findings Meconium aspiration Aspiration Infection Infection Increased lung density Transient tachypnoea Transient tachypnoea of Symmetrical or of the newborn (TTN)/ the newborn (TTN)/ asymmetrical Wet lung Wet lung Respiratory distress Focal or syndrome (RDS) diffuse / hyaline membrane disease (HMD) Pulmonary haemorrhage Spontaneous pneumothorax Spontaneous Crescentic pneumothorax lucency Patent ductus / Linear markings persistent foetal Increased circulation vascularity Table III.
In our collective from 2015 which totaled 1038 cases that were subjected to the lung dust analysis, 609 patients (58.7%) had asbestos body counts of less than 23/g of wet lung tissue; thus no increased asbestos burden could be established as against the non-exposed population and no asbestosis was present.
The harvested wet lung was weighed and then placed in an oven for 24 hrs at 80[degrees] C and weighed when it was dried.
(a) Reported as asbestos bodies or uncoated fibers 5 [micro]m or greater in length per gram of wet lung tissue.
"We found most traffic fume particles to be very small and hydrophobic (having little affinity for water), meaning they did not grow bigger once inside the wet lung. But small particles get deposited in the lung more easily," New Scientist magazine quoted the researcher as saying.
When it comes to diagnosing "wet lungs," the standard has been listening for chest crackling sounds with a stethoscope and measuring blood pressure - more fluid on the lungs prevents oxygen from being absorbed into the bloodstream.