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The Muscular System

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The muscular system is the set of all the muscles that make up the human body. It is an extensive system of muscles and nervous tissue, which is distributed all through the body. In total, the human body consists of approximately 650 muscles (Shier, Butler, Lewis, 2009). The muscular system is divided into three types of muscle: cardiac muscle, smooth muscle, and skeletal muscle (p.212).

Cardiac muscle is a type of involuntary muscle found only in the walls of the heart, specifically the myocardium. Cardiac muscles contract automatically to tighten the walls of the heart in a rhythmic fashion (pp.212-216). The heart beats nonstop about 100,000 times each day (p.18). Smooth muscle is a type of involuntary muscle found within the walls of blood vessels such as in small arteries and veins. Smooth muscle is also found in the urinary bladder, uterus, male and female reproductive tracts, gastrointestinal tract, and the respiratory tract. Skeletal muscles are voluntarily controlled and are attached to bones by tendons. Skeletal muscles also vary considerably in size and shape. They range from extremely tiny strands such as in the muscle of the middle ear as large like in the muscles of the thigh (Martini, 2000). The three individual muscle types also serve five main functions. The five basic functions are movement, organ protection, pumping blood, aiding digestion, and ensuring blood flow.

The first basic function of the muscular system is movement, which is carried out by the skeletal muscles. The primary function of the skeletal muscle is to produce voluntary gross and fine motor movement. This set of voluntary muscles provides the forces that enable the body to move. A skeletal muscle links two bones across its connec...

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...s it something that patients can look forward to even with treatment. Physically, muscular dystrophy is a burden but it also affects the person’s social participation. Young children may not understand or want to play with children with muscular dystrophy. Also playgrounds may not be equipped with the adequate equipment to allow children with muscular dystrophy to participate.

The muscular system is an intricate system that if affected can seriously affect the quality of daily living as well as total life span. Covering the entire body the muscular system consists of skeletal, smooth, and cardiac muscle. And within the three muscle groups five basic functions are executed: movement, protecting vital organs, pumping blood, aiding digestion, and ensuring blood flow. None of these important tasks would be possible without a healthy and strong muscular system.
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