Introduction to the Physiology of Human Body Essay

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Words: 1630
Pages: 7

1. Define anatomy and physiology
While anatomy provides us with a static image of the body architecture, physiology reveals the body’s dynamic and animated workings. Physiology often focuses on events at the cellular or molecular level.
A. Anatomy – studies the structure of the body parts and their relationship to one another.
i. Developmental – concerns structural changes that in the body occur throughout the lifespan. Embryology studies the developmental changes that occur before birth. ii. Microscopic – deals with structures too small to be seen by the naked eye. Cytology studies the cells of the body and histology studies the tissues. iii. Macroscopic/Gross – the study of large body structures visible to the naked eye, such as the heart, lungs, and kidneys. Gross anatomy ca be approached in different ways, such as Systemic (body structure is studied by systems), Regional (by particular region) or surface (internal structures as the relate to the overlying skin surface).

B. Physiology – concerns the function of the body, how the body works and carry out their life-sustaining activities.
i. Renal physiology – concerns kidney function and urine production. ii. Neurophysiology – explains the workings of the nervous system. iii. Cardiovascular physiology – examines the operation of the heart and blood vessels.
2. Levels of structural organisation
A. Chemical Level – the simplest level includes atoms, building blocks, which combine to form molecules, like water. Molecules then combine to form organelles, the internal organs of cells.
B. Cellular Level – made up of cells, the smallest unit of living matter. Individual cells have some common functions, but vary is size and shape. Different types of cells carry out different functions.
C. Tissue Level – tissues are groups of cells that have a common function. The four basic types of tissue in humans, (epithelium, connective, muscle and nervous), each have a characteristic role in the body.
D. Organ Level – an organ is a structure of at least two different tissue types that perform a specific function with the body, such as the brain, liver, etc. Functions begin to emerge at this level.
E. Organ System Level – one or more organs work together to achieve a common purpose. For example, the heart and blood vessels work together to circulate blood around the body, providing oxygen and nutrients to cells.
F. Organismal Level – the highest level of organisation, is the sum of all structural levels working together.
3. functions of the major organs systems
The human body is made up of 11 organ systems that work with one another interdependently.
A. Integumentary – forms the external body covering and protects deeper tissues from injury, synthesizes vitamin D, and houses cutaneous receptors and sweat/oil glands. (Hair, skin, nails, etc.).
B. Skeletal – protects and supports internal organs and provides a framework the muscles use to cause movement. Blood cells are formed within bones and bones store minerals.
C. Muscular – allows manipulation of the environment, locomotion and facial expression, maintains posture and produces heat. (Skeletal, cardiac and smooth)
D. Nervous – the fast acting control system of the body that responds to internal and external changes by activating appropriate muscles and glands. (Spine, nerves and brain)
E. Endocrine – glands secrete hormones that regulate processed such as growth, reproduction and metabolism by body cells. (Thyroid, pituitary, pineal, adrenal, pancreas, ovary and testis).
F. Cardiovascular – blood vessels transport blood, which carries oxygen, carbon dioxide, nutrients, wastes, etc. The heart pumps blood around the body. (Blood vessels and the heart)
G. Lymphatic/Immune – picks up the fluid leaked from blood vessels and returns it to blood. Disposes of debris in the lymphatic system. Houses white blood cells (lymphocytes) involved in immunity. (Lymphatic vessels, thymus, thoracic duct, red bone marrow,…