“Emphysema; respiratory bronchioles and alveoli are too big” shows the principle of structures whose sizes are too big as a result of the loss of elasticity related to smoking. The lungs therefore cannot perform their function to exchange gases optimally.
The left sided image is an artistic rendering of the normal terminal bronchioles and alveoli and shows normal lung architecture. The right image is is an artistic rendering showing the ravages of the disease called emphysema caused by smoking. In this disease the small airways and alveoli lose their elasticity and get stretched evolving into larger and larger structures. These small airways look like big berries on a dilated stalk (respiratory bronchiole)