• 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 ...

    It was difficult to distinguish between two measurements, i.e. between 0.3 and 0.4, so I had to round up to the nearest graduated measurement on the capillary tube. This approximation would have slightly altered my results, and consequently would have altered my statistical calculations, thus reducing the accuracy and reliability of my calculations and conclusions.

  2. Cardiovascular and Respiratory Systems

    The typical human has around 5 litres of blood in their body. Blood is made up of several different substances: * Plasma 55% * Cells 45% * Platelets 45% * Plasma: plasma is what makes the blood a liquid. Without it the cells in the blood would be solid and therefore not travel around the body.

  1. Factors Affecting the Development of Coronary Heart Disease.

    This happens because of a build-up of cholesterol and other substances in the wall of the blood vessel, affecting the blood flow to the heart muscle. * Deposits of cholesterol and other fat-like substances can build up in the inner lining of these blood vessels and become coated with scar

  2. Stem Cell Research

    These issues arise because stem cell research involves the "tampering with, and destroying of embryos", which have the potential to develop into human beings. 42 There is no scientific test that can be performed to decide whether or not a blastocyst should be classified as a human being or not.43 It comes down to an individual's beliefs and moral reasoning.

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

    activity of the heart's conduction system; this information is recorded in the form of a trace like the diagram below. The trace is known as an electrocardiogram or an ECG. On the diagram you can see a P, this wave occurs just before the atria contract, QRS wave complex occur just before the ventricles contract.

  2. The Biological and Psychological Impact of Smoking Cigarettes

    Smoking, including second-hand smoke, is the leading cause of lung cancer(3). Cardiovascular diseases are diseases of the heart, the blood vessels of the heart and the system of blood vessels throughout the body and within the brain. Cardiovascular diseases caused by smoking are the largest cause of premature death in industrialised societies, killing even more people than lung cancer(6).

  1. Should the cloning of humans be allowed?

    Human Cloning Bid Stirs Experts' Anger. [online]. Washington: Washington Post. Available at: http://www.endanimalcloning.org/images/HumanCloning.pdf [Accessed 21 February 2010] 12 Panarance, M, et al., 2007. How healthy are clones and their progeny: 5 years of field experience. Theriogenology, Vol. 67, 142-151. 13 Cloning the First Human, 2001. [online]. BBC Science & Nature.

  2. Biology smoking coursework. Should smoking be banned in public places?

    It also tends to effect pregnant women causing harm to the foetus. Despite this, a significant number of pregnant women are today noted to smoke cigarettes, mainly because of addiction and stress. About 30% of British women continue to smoke whilst pregnant irrespective of the health problems that can be caused by smoking.

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