• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

The effects of smoking on the cardio-respiratory system

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Cardio-respiratory System Lindzi Eaton- Ward The cardio-respiratory system consists of the cardio-vascular system working together with the respiratory system. These systems work together to transport oxygen to the muscles and organs of the body and to remove waste products including carbon dioxide. Humans need energy to carry out processes of life. In particular, energy is needed for growth and repair, and to keep the body temperature stable. The energy is obtained from the oxidation of organic molecules such as glucose. Respiration uses glucose and oxygen and produces carbon dioxide, water, and energy. This goes on constantly in every living cell of the body, and to keep the process going, the body must obtain a constant supply of oxygen and excrete carbon dioxide as waste, (Boyle 2002) The main function of the cardio-respiratory system is to link the circulatory system with the atmosphere. Its structure provides an environment that enables oxygen to be passed into the blood and carbon dioxide to be excreted. The two main processes taking place in the respiratory system are breathing/ventilation and gaseous exchange. Breathing/ventilation is the movement of air in and out of the lungs. Gaseous exchange is the movement from the air in the alveoli of the lungs to the blood capillaries surrounding them; this process is called external respiration. The process, which takes place inside the cells, when oxygen and glucose are used to produce energy, is called internal respiration. ...read more.

Middle

However, the blood returns to the heart, giving it a boost so that it can reach all the body parts quickly, (Boyle 2002) The hearts structure is mainly cardiac muscle - specialised tissue that contracts automatically, powerfully and without tiring. The thickness of the walls in the heart chambers reflects on their function. The atria are thinly muscled: they pump blood the shortest distance to the ventricles directly below them. The right ventricle is more heavily muscled than either of the atria: it has to force blood a further distance to the lungs. The left ventricle has the thickest wall: it has to push blood all around the body, (see appendix 2) for this process. The effects of smoking can have serious consequences to the structure and function of the cardio-respiratory system. People suffer with terrible illnesses such as, cardio-vascular disease - this is the main cause of death due to smoking. The hardening of the arteries is a process that develops over years when cholesterol and other fats deposit in the arteries leaving them narrow, blocked, or rigid. When the arteries narrow (atherosclerosis), blood clots are likely to form. Smoking accelerates the hardening and narrowing process in the arteries: it starts earlier and blood clots are two to four times more likely. Cardiovascular disease can take many forms depending on which blood vessels are involved, and all of them are more common in people who smoke. ...read more.

Conclusion

(Netdoctor 2007) Looking at the above statistics it is clear to see that smoking does have serious consequences on health. While it was an encouraged habit in the 1950's it is far from encouraged now, with the government banning cigarette smoking in all public places and health warnings being constantly in the media, hoping to result in the public either quitting smoking or not starting at all. The effects of stopping smoking take effect from as little as 8 hours after the last cigarette is smoked. After 8 hours, nicotine and carbon monoxide levels in the blood are reduced by half and oxygen levels return to normal. 24 hours later and carbon monoxide is eliminated from the body. Lungs start to clear out mucus and other smoking debris. It only takes 48 hours for nicotine to leave the body, with the ability to taste and smell being greatly improved. Breathing becomes easier after 72 hours, bronchial tubes begin to relax, and energy levels increase. Between 3 - 9 months after stopping smoking, coughs, wheezing and breathing problems improve as lung function is increased by 10%. 5 years after stopping smoking and the risk of a heart attack falls to about half of that of a smoker. Finally, 10 years after stopping smoking and the risk of lung cancer falls to half of that of a smoker. The risk of a heart attack falls to the same as someone who has never smoked. (Go smoke free leaflet 2007) ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Humans as Organisms section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Humans as Organisms essays

  1. An experiment to investigate the rate of anaerobic respiration of yeast in various respiratory ...

    There were also errors produced when measuring the amount of Carbon Dioxide produced. I could only approximate the movement of manometer fluid and it was difficult to measure the amount of Carbon Dioxide produced to a high degree of accuracy.

  2. Cardiovascular and Respiratory Systems

    They subdivide to form smaller vessels called arterioles, which then branch off again to form capillaries. Thee vessel are cylindrical and muscular and are able to contract and dilate in order to regulate blood flow. * Veins: these vessels are usually responsible for the movement of deoxygenated blood back towards

  1. Stem Cell Research

    in the future, this acceptance could lead to greater tolerance for previously unacceptable actions. For example, the sacrifice of embryos in the present could increase the social tolerance for loss of life. This may change how society views the ending of life of other people in the future.

  2. List the effects of exercise on the cardiovascular system, including the cardiac cycle and ...

    trained athlete can increase venous return and therefore stroke volume during resting periods. This accounts for the decrease in resting heart rate or bradycardia which if often known to professional athletes. For example if you exercise daily and to a high tempo then your heart will be bigger as it

  1. Factors Affecting the Development of Coronary Heart Disease.

    Exercise can help control blood cholesterol, diabetes and obesity, as well as help lower blood pressure in some people. * Obesity and overweight - People who have excess body fat - especially if a lot of it is at the waist - are more likely to develop heart disease and stroke even if they have no other risk factors.

  2. Should the cloning of humans be allowed?

    A. (2003). Homologous recombination in human embryonic stem cells. Nat Biotechnol 21, 319-21.) However I am aware that because the scientists' article was published in 2003 and this case study was written in 2010, the scientific technique may be outdated. But since it was published less than ten years ago, I feel that is not too long for it not to have some validity.

  1. The cardiovascular and respiratory system

    However, the left side of the heart is responsible for pumping the blood around the body. Because of this function the muscle of the right side of the heart is much bigger than the muscle on the left side. This is because the systemic system requires a much stronger pump to get the blood all the way around the body.

  2. Structure and function of the vascular system

    The smaller, more muscular, arteries and the arterioles are used to control blood flow. Contraction of the smooth muscle is these vessels narrows their lumen and restricts blood flow. Capillaries - The arterioles transport blood to the capillaries. The capillaries are the smallest of the blood vessels and their walls

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work