What Is Pleurisy?

By james
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To take in fresh air, our muscles will pull on our lungs to open them up, thus sucking air in. The lungs are then pushed upon to cause them to deflate, and this will cause us to exhale. This is an effective system of ensuring our bodies have a constant supply of fresh air from which they can take oxygen.

As the lungs expand and contract, they could rub against the inside of the chest cavity, and this would cause problems. However, we have evolved a system that allows the two to slide smoothly against each other. Things will sometimes go wrong with this system, however, including a condition known as pleurisy.

1. Pleurisy

In the chest cavity are two layers of tissue known as the pleura. One of these lines the inner wall of the chest, and the other lines the outer wall of the lungs. The two layers are right next to each other, except for being separated by a small gap that is filled with a fluid.

The two layers allow for the lungs to slide over the inner wall of the chest as we inhale and exhale. Pleurisy is a condition where these layers become inflamed, and this will cause the two layers of the pleura to rub against each other. This will, in turn, result in some very unwelcome symptoms for the patient.


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