11 Organ Systems In The Human Body

11 Organ Systems In The Human Body – As we have learned, our bodies are complicated systems made up of cells, tissues, organs, and organ systems. However, for life to function properly, these systems must work together. Organs often perform roles in multiple systems due to their unique functions. In this section we learn how systems work together and we learn about a few essential life functions that require the work of multiple body systems.

The level of organization in the body is perhaps the most familiar to us from our everyday experiences. Many of the common ailments we hear about – an upset stomach, a broken bone, lung disease, skin cancer – are named after the organs they affect.

11 Organ Systems In The Human Body

11 Organ Systems In The Human Body

An organ is made up of tissues that work together to perform a specific function for the body as a whole. Groups of organs that perform related functions are organized into organ systems, which perform more general functions. Table 1 describes the structures and functions of some common organs.

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Organ systems are made up of organs that work together to perform a specific function for the body as a whole. Table 2 describes the organ systems and their primary organs and physiological functions, which we will deal with on the following pages.

Note that we have chosen to organize the rest of this module into three basic groups: systems involved in “control”, systems with “cell maintenance”, and systems with “support”. It is important to remember that, just as organs and systems work together, these categories are not mutually exclusive. For example, we have placed the reproductive system in the control category, as it is involved in controlling the process and events of reproduction. However, the reproductive system is also a cell maintenance system as it produces and maintains the actual cells used for reproduction. Just remember that these are groupings that help you mentally organize your learning more than the hard rules of anatomy and physiology.

The organ systems in the body all work together to maintain proper physiological functions. Many times in the arena of anatomy and physiology, including in this course, we closely examine the body’s molecules, cells, tissues, and organs to learn their forms and functions. However, it is important to consider that each molecule functions as part of the whole system. Endocrine disorders such as diabetes affect glucose levels in the body. Altered blood sugar levels can affect many organ systems. For example, the immune system may not heal as well, the urinary system may experience kidney damage, and the cardiovascular system may experience vascular damage, even to the point of causing blindness. In the body, everything is connected.

Assigning organs to organ systems can be imprecise, as organs that “belong” to one system may also have functions integrated into another system. In fact, most organs contribute to more than one system.

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Each organ system performs specific functions for the body, and each organ system is typically studied independently. However, the organ systems also work together to help the body maintain homeostasis.

For example, the cardiovascular, urinary, and lymphatic systems all help the body control water balance. The cardiovascular and lymphatic systems transport fluids throughout the body, helping to sense both solute and water levels and regulate pressure. If the water level becomes too high, the urinary system produces more dilute urine (urine with a higher water content) to help remove excess water. If the water level gets too low, more concentrated urine is produced so that water is conserved.

Similarly, the cardiovascular, integumentary (skin and associated structures), respiratory and muscular systems work together to help the body maintain a stable internal temperature. If the body temperature rises, the blood vessels in the skin dilate, allowing more blood to flow near the surface of the skin. This allows the heat to dissipate through the skin and into the surrounding air. The skin can also produce sweat if the body gets too hot; when the sweat evaporates, it helps to cool the body. Rapid breathing can also help the body to remove excess heat. Together, these reactions to increased body temperature explain why you sweat, pant and turn red in the face when you exercise hard. (Heavy breathing during exercise is also a way for the body to get more oxygen to your muscles and get rid of the extra carbon dioxide produced by the muscles.)

11 Organ Systems In The Human Body

Conversely, if your body is too cold, the blood vessels in the skin constrict and blood flow to the extremities (arms and legs) slows down. Muscles contract and relax quickly, generating heat to keep you warm. The hairs on your skin stand up and trap more air, which is a good insulator, close to your skin. These reactions to decreased body temperature explain why you shiver, get “goosebumps” and have cold, pale extremities when you are cold.

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So what happens when you have a fever? Does it mean your body is unable to maintain its homeostasis, the same way your house gets too hot if your air conditioner is broken?

In extreme cases, fever can be a medical emergency; but fever is an adaptive physiological response of our body to certain infectious substances. Certain chemicals called pyrogens will cause your hypothalamus to shift the set point to a higher value. It’s more like you program the thermostat in your house to a higher temperature to save energy on a hot day when you won’t be home during the day. These pyrogens can come from microorganisms that infect you, or they can be produced by your body cells in response to an infection of some kind.

Although the evidence is only circumstantial, fever is thought to improve the body’s immune response. The increased temperature can actually impair the replication of infectious bacteria and viruses that are adapted to survive best at your normal homeostatic body temperature range. This can give your immune cells a chance to destroy the microorganisms before they can quickly multiply and spread in the body. There is also some indirect evidence that increasing body temperature slightly alters several metabolic responses in ways that also allow the immune system to function more efficiently.

Unfortunately, during some infections, the pyrogen levels come in “waves”. This adjusts your temperature set point up and down. When the pyrogen level drops, you get the second part of the fever experience: the “sweat” and the feeling of flushing. As long as pyrogen levels continue to rise and fall, you will feel like you are swinging back and forth.

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Your body will continue to oscillate back and forth between the body’s normal upper and lower temperature limits, but because it is now within your “normal” temperature range, you probably won’t even notice that your body is still at work maintaining the homeostasis of this variable.

Body functions such as regulation of heartbeat, contraction of muscles, activation of enzymes and cellular communication require tightly regulated calcium levels. Normally, we get a lot of calcium from our diet. The small intestine absorbs calcium from digested food.

The endocrine system is the control center for regulating blood calcium homeostasis. The parathyroid and thyroid contain receptors that respond to levels of calcium in the blood. In this feedback system, the blood calcium level is variable because it changes in response to the environment. Changes in blood calcium levels have the following effects:

11 Organ Systems In The Human Body

Calcium imbalance in the blood can lead to illness or even death. Hypocalcemia refers to low calcium levels in the blood. Signs of hypocalcemia include muscle spasms and heart failure. Hypercalcemia occurs when blood calcium levels are higher than normal. Hypercalcemia can also cause heart defects as well as muscle weakness and kidney stones.

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Option c is correct. The heart is often affected by large short-term calcium changes, and the bones are often affected by small long-term calcium changes. Calcium homeostasis dysfunction can also affect muscle function and can result in the formation of kidney stones.

As you have learned, proper calcium levels are important for maintaining whole body homeostasis. Calcium ions are used for heartbeat, contraction of muscles, activation of enzymes and cellular communication. The parathyroid and thyroid glands of the endocrine system detect changes in blood calcium levels. When the parathyroid glands detect low blood calcium levels, several organ systems change their function to restore blood calcium levels back to normal. The skeletal, urinary, and digestive systems all act as effectors to achieve this goal through negative feedback.

The release of parathyroid hormone from the endocrine system triggers osteoclasts in the skeletal system to resorb bone and release calcium into the blood. Similarly, this hormone causes the kidneys in the urinary system to reabsorb calcium and return it to the blood instead of excreting calcium in the urine. Through altered function of the kidneys to form active vitamin D, the small intestine in the digestive system increases the absorption of calcium.

When the thyroid detects elevated blood calcium levels, the skeletal, urinary, and digestive systems help lower blood calcium levels back to normal. Release of the hormone calcitonin from the thyroid gland into the endocrine system triggers a series of reactions. The osteoblasts of the skeletal system use excess calcium in the blood to deposit new bone. The kidneys of the urinary system excrete excess calcium in the urine instead of recovering calcium through reabsorption. Finally,

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