Humidity Maintains Efficient Gas Exchange and Preserves Airway Defense
As air travels down the airway, heat and moisture is drawn from the airway mucosa to the point where the gas reaches 37 °C, 44 mg/L at the carina. The majority of this conditioning is carried out in the nasopharynx. It is important for the airway mucosa to retain a balance of heat and moisture to maintain a fully functioning mucociliary transport system and an efficient line of defense. This in turn plays an important role in efficient gas exchange by maintaining clear and open airways with effective mucus clearance.