The Heart and Its Diseases

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The Heart and Its Diseases Cardiology has intrigued me since I was a small child. It has been my goal to become a cardiologist ever since the first grade. Cardiology is more than just studying the heart. To define it properly would be to say that cardiology is the study of the heart, its action, and its diseases (Clayman 52). The heart is located in the center of the chest, just behind the sternum, sitting in a hollow cavity between the lungs. The heart is slightly larger than your fist. It is about five inches long, three inches wide, and two inches thick. The heart is commonly represented in the familiar Valentine shape, but it actually resembles a grapefruit. The external features of the heart consist of the pericardium. The function of the pericardium is to support and protect the heart. The inside of the pericardium is lined with a membrane that secrets a lubrication fluid which allows the pericardium to slide smoothly over the surface as the heart pumps. The internal features of the heart are quite a bit more complicated than the external features. The main features internally are the heart's four hollow spaces, which are referred to as the chambers (Clayman 86). The pumping part of the heart consists of two very thin walled upper chambers, which are given the name atria. The two thick-walled lower chambers of the heart are called ventricles. The wall that divides the right side of the heart from the left is called the septum. The muscles in these walls of the chambers provide the pumping action of the heart. These muscles cause the chamber to contract forcefully when the heart beats, which pushes blood through the body. The chambers of the heart can be divided into three layers. The most important... ... middle of paper ... ...existence. Without it functioning properly, the risks of these diseases overcoming you are great. If you eat properly, exercise regularly, and practice good health habits, the chances of you getting these diseases are dramatically reduced. So, take care of your heart. You need it to survive. Bibliography: Cheitlin, Melvin D. MD. Dilemmas in Clinical Cardiology. Philadelphia: F.A. Davis Company. 1990. Cheitlin, Melvin D. MD; et al. McIlroy, Malcom B. MD. ; Sokolow, Maurice MD. Clinical Cardiology. Sixth edition. Connecticut: Appleton & Lange. 1993. Clayman, Charles B. MD. Your Heart. New York: The Reader's Digest Association, Inc. 1989. DeBakey, Michael E. MD; et al. Gotto, Antonio MD. The Living Heart. New York David McKay Company, Inc. 1977. Katz, Arnold M. Physiology of the Heart. New York: Raven Press. 1977.

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