In the reopening of fluid occluded airways, the pressure gradient due to the propagation of an air bubble causes extensive epithelial cell damage. The mechanism of cell necrosis and biotransport may be further understood by characterizing the flow fields near the tip of a semi-infinite bubble propagating through a fluid-filled bifurcation. A symmetric microfluidic pulmonary bifurcation model was fabricated for optical diagnostics with an instantaneous μ-PIV/ shadowgraphy microscopy system. Data handling and processing techniques were developed to calculate interfacial characteristics of multiphase flow from the microscopy system and accuracy was quantified through varying the apparatus set up. Differences in the interfacial geometric characteristics were quantified for changes in static and dynamic surface tension in comparisons of water, SDS, and Infasurf that may reflect changes in the mechanical stress that stimulate, and potentially damage, epithelial cells that line the airways. From these results, the asymmetrical tendencies of opening a symmetric pulmonary bifurcation model were quantified. It was found that pulmonary surfactant stabilized symmetric bifurcations that opened asymmetrically without the aid of surfactant.