You are on page 1of 21

ANATOMY &

PHYSIOLOGY OF THE
DIGESTIVE SYSTEM
The organs of the digestive system can be
separated into two main groups: those
forming the alimentary canal and the
accessory digestive organs.

THE ALIMENTARY CANAL


The alimentary canal also called the
Gastrointestinal Tract performs the
digestive functions that are to ingest,
digests, absorbs, and defecates. The
organs of the alimentary canal are
described as follows:
MOUTH
The mouth, buccal cavity, or oral cavity
is the first portion of the alimentary canal
that receives food and begins digestion
by mechanically breaking up the solid
food particles into smaller pieces and
mixing them with saliva. The
oral mucosa is the mucous membrane
epithelium lining the inside of the mouth.
PHARYNX
The pharynx is the part of the neck and
throat situated immediately posterior to
(behind) the mouth and nasal cavity, and
cranial, or superior, to the esophagus,
larynx, and trachea. Both food and air
pass through the pharynx, a flap of
connective tissue called the epiglottis
closes over the trachea when food is
swallowed to prevent choking or
aspiration.
ESOPHAGUS
The esophagus sometimes known as the
gullet, is an organ in which consists of a
muscular tube through which food
passes from the pharynx to the stomach.
Food is passed through the esophagus
by using the process of peristalsis.
STOMACH
The stomach lies between the
esophagus and the duodenum. It is on
the left side of the abdominal cavity. The
top of the stomach lies against the
diaphragm. The connection between the
stomach and the esophagus is called the
cardiac sphincter. The cardiac sphincter
prevents food from passing back to the
esophagus. The other end of the
stomach empties into the
duodenum. The duodenum is the first
section of the small intestine. The pyloric
sphincter separates the stomach from the
duodenum. Stomach is responsible for the
second phase of digestion, and performs
three vital functions: stores food, breaks
down food into a chyme, and slowly
empties chyme into the small intestine.
SMALL INTESTINE
The small intestine is the part of the
gastrointestinal tract (gut) following the
stomach and followed by the
large intestine, and is where the vast
majority of digestion and absorption of
food takes place. The small intestine is
divided into three structural parts in the
following manner: Duodenum, Jejunum,
and Ileum.
LARGE INTESTINE
The large intestine is the last part of the
digestive system and the final stage of the
alimentary canal. Its function is to absorb water
from the remaining indigestible food matter,
and then to pass useless waste material from
the body. The large intestine consists of the
cecum and colon. It starts in the right
iliac region of the pelvis, just at or below the
right waist, where it is joined to the bottom end
of the small intestine. From here it continues up
the abdomen, then across the width of the
abdominal cavity, and then it turns down,
continuing to its endpoint at the anus
THE ACCESSORY ORGANS
The accessory organs (teeth, tongue, and
several large digestive glands) assist the
process of digestive breakdown in various
ways.
SALIVARY GLANDS
The glands are found in and around the mouth and
the throat. The major salivary glands are the parotid,
submandibular, and sublingual glands. They all
secrete saliva in mouth, the parotid through tubes
that drain saliva, called salivary ducts, near the
upper teeth, submandibular under the tongue, and
the sublingual through many ducts in the floor of the
mouth. Besides these glands, there are many tiny
glands called minor salivary glands located in the
lips, inner cheek area (buccal mucosa), and
extensively in other linings of the mouth and throat.
Salivary glands produce the saliva used to moisten
your mouth, initiate digestion, and help protect your
teeth from decay.
TEETH
Teeth are small whitish structures found
in the jaws (or mouths) that are used to
tear, scrape, and chew or masticate food
.
PANCREAS
The pancreas is a gland organ in the
digestive and endocrine system of
vertebrates. It is both an endocrine gland
producing several important hormones,
including insulin, glucagon, and
somatostatin, as well as an
exocrine gland, secreting
pancreatic juice containing digestive
enzymes that pass to the small intestine.
These enzymes help in the further
breakdown of the carbohydrates, protein,
and fat in the chyme.
LIVER AND GALLBLADDER
A liver is a soft, pinkish-brown, triangular organ. It is
located in the right upper quadrant of the
abdominal cavity, resting just below the diaphragm.
The liver lies to the right of the stomach and overlies
the gallbladder. The liver is a vital organ that has a
wide range of functions, a few of which are
detoxification, protein synthesis, and production of
biochemicals necessary for digestion. The liver plays a
major role in metabolism and has a number of
functions in the body, including glycogen storage,
decomposition of red blood cells, plasma protein
synthesis, hormone production, and
detoxification.
The liver is also the largest gland in the
human body. It lies below the diaphragm in the
thoracic region of the abdomen. It produces bile,
an alkaline compound which aids in digestion,
via the emulsification of lipids. It also performs
and regulates a wide variety of high-volume
biochemical reactions requiring highly
specialized tissues.
The gallbladder or cholecyst, is a small non-
vital organ which aids in the digestive
process and concentrates bile produced in
the liver. The gallbladder is a hollow organ
that sits in a concavity of the liver known as
the gallbladder fossa. It is divided into three
sections: fundus, body, and neck. The neck
tapers and connects to the biliary tree via the
cystic duct, which then joins the
common hepatic duct to become the
common bile duct.
GIT with Duodenal ulcer