• 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 ...

    This means there was a low concentration of Oxygen in the syringe which I had not accounted for. So in the various repeats, there would have been different concentrations of Oxygen. This would have been a confounding variable, which would have affected the results of my experiment and therefore the reliability of my conclusions and analysis.

  2. Cardiovascular and Respiratory Systems

    Blood Vessels. The blood vessels are the body's transport network as they allow blood to travel to every part of the body and return to the heart. The system of vessels consists of: * Arteries: these are large vessels, which usually carry oxygenated blood away from the heart to the rest of the body (the exception being the pulmonary artery).

  1. Stem Cell Research

    This means that it could be possible for people to be more accepting of the ending of life of elderly or disabled people.21 Other possible scenarios that could arise from embryonic stem cell research are; cloning, embryo farms, or even the use of dead foetuses for "spare" body parts.50 Many

  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. Should the cloning of humans be allowed?

    As well as this, the source was published 12 years ago in 1998 and the science discussed in it could be out of date or disproved. But I did use this source in my case study because another source discussed a similar scientific technique that had been used in 2009 and had been successful.

  2. 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.

  1. Factors Affecting the Development of Coronary Heart Disease.

    At older ages, women who have heart attacks are more likely than men are to die from them within a few weeks. * Male sex (gender) - Men have a greater risk of heart attack than women do, and they have attacks earlier in life.

  2. The Biological and Psychological Impact of Smoking Cigarettes

    It is an inflammatory disease of the air way. It is a chronic condition in which the airways undergo changes when stimulated by allergens or irritants e.g. tobacco smoke. As a result of this inflammation, the airways become blocked or narrowed because of swelling, muscular contractions and mucous production.

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