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Homeostatic Mechanisms and Malfunctions Leading to Disorders

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  1. Introduction
  2. Homeostatic control mechanisms work
  3. Homeostatic balance & imbalances
  4. Conclusion

The internal bodily environment is made up of physiological variables such as body temperature, blood sugar levels and mineral concentrations yet organisms are required to function effectively in this wide range of conditions. Homeostasis is the ability of systems or organism to be able to regulate their internal environment and maintain a stable constant condition in a changing environment by the release of hormones into the blood stream. Homeostasis is maintained by mechanisms in the body and all organs and tissues of the body carry out different functions aimed at maintaining constant conditions in the internal environment.

[...] The increased metabolic activity results in a rise in the internal body temperature. When there is an imbalance in any of these mechanisms then the body cannot self- regulate its internal temperature and this can lead to diseases that affect the whole body and have adverse effects on the body in terms of either very high temperatures of very low temperatures (Richardson n.d.). Similarly the homeostatic mechanisms are used to regulate the water retained in the body in that when there is increased water build-up in the blood the hypothalamus which contains the osmoreceptor cells which secretes the ADH (antidiuretic hormone).This hormone controls the absorption of water from the blood into the body cells thus reducing the amount of water in the bloodstream. [...]


[...] Homeostasis is maintained by mechanisms in the body and all organs and tissues of the body carry out different functions aimed at maintaining constant conditions in the internal environment. Homeostasis is a mechanism by which the body maintains its own internal state of equilibrium even when there are changes in the external environment. This mechanism ensures that the body maintains a relatively stable state. The way this mechanism works can be described is a bit like the way a thermostat in a house or car engine cooling system works. [...]


[...] This lack of balance ends up affecting multiple organs within the body. The central nervous system is affected to cause lethargy and stupor, which causes blurred vision. In the respiratory system this imbalance results in hyperventilation while in the gastric system it causes nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. A combination of all these malfunctions results in general weight loss and health deterioration which, if unchecked, eventually leads to death (Shmoop Editorial Team 2008). When it comes to temperature regulation, a rise in the external temperature triggers a response from the peripheral heat receptors in the skin which then signal to the temperature control centre in the brain the hypothalamus which activates the skin reaction of the skin capillaries dilating which lets out heat from the body and also activates the sweat glands which give off heat when sweat evaporates from the skin causing the skin temperature to cool down. [...]


[...] Homeostasis. Available: http://www.biologymad.com/resources/A2%20Homeostasis.pdf. Last accessed 7th June 2013. Noel Ways. (n.d). Feedback Systems. Available: http://www.noelways.com/courses/Body%20in%20Health%20and%20Dis/Lectures /Lec_1_Intro/Feedback_Sys.pdf. Last accessed 7th June 2013. Richardson, M. [...]

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