Reflective Account

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HSC 2024 Pressure area care
(1.1) describe the anatomy and physiology of the skin in relation to skin breakdown and the development of pressure sores

ANATOMY AND PHYSIOLOGY The skin is primarily composed of three layers. The skin, which appears to be so thin, is still itself divided into epider­mis, dermis, and subcutaneous layer or hy­podermis. Please refer to the figure below to understand all the three layers. Each layer has it own function and own importance in maintaining the integrity of skin and thereby the whole body structure. So lets, study each part in detail. 1. Epidermis: Epidermis is the topmost layer or rather the visible part of the skin that is composed of stratified squamous epithelial cells. This layer is com­posed of five layers of cel1s, which are arranged in two zones; the superficial horny layer and a germinal layer beneath it. The horny layer is again made up of three layers of cells. These are stratum corneum , which is the superficial layer. It has thin, flat, dead cells filled with keratin, which are constantly being cast off. Keratin is a very important constituent as it is a type of insoluble fibrous protein that helps to protect the body. This layer helps in protection against heat, chemicals, light, and microorganisms. Below this layer is stra­tum lucidum . This layer contains flat cells with no distinct outline and no nuclei. These cells contain eleidin, which is a retractile and weakly staining keratin present in the cells of the stratum lucidum of the palmar and plantar epidermis, which is a prekeratinous substance. Below this layer is stratum granulosum .

It is a layer of well-defined flat cells, which have their own nucleus and also granules and con­tains a substance called keratohyalin, which later becomes keratin. The next layer of the epidermis is stratum spinosum , which is the first and largest layer of the germinal zone of epidermis. It is made up of prickle cells having prickle-like appearance. The...
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