Human respiratory mechanics demonstration model

Janelle Anderson*, Chris Goplen, Lynn Murray, Kristen Seashore, Malini Soundarrajan, Andrew Lokuta, Kevin Strang, Naomi Chesler

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Respiratory mechanics is a difficult topic for instructors and students alike. Existing respiratory mechanics models are limited in their abilities to demonstrate any effects of rib cage movement on alveolar and intrapleural pressures. We developed a model that can be used in both large and small classroom settings. This model contains digital pressure displays and computer integration for real-time demonstration of pressure changes that correspond to the different phases of breathing. Moving the simulated diaphragm and rib cage causes a volume change that results in pressure changes visible on the digital sensors and computer display. Device testing confirmed the model's ability to accurately demonstrate pressure changes in proportion to physiological values. Classroom testing in 427 surveyed students showed improved understanding of respiratory concepts (P < 0.05). We conclude that our respiratory mechanics model is a valuable instructional tool and provide detailed instructions for those who would like to create their own.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)53-59
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Advances in Physiology Education
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2009


  • Classroom tool
  • Physiology demonstration
  • Pressure changes
  • Respiratory physiology
  • Student survey

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Physiology


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