3. Physiological factors a. The oxygen content of the blood in dermal vessels may cause the skin of light-complexioned persons to appear pinkish or bluish.
b. Carotene in the subcutaneous layer may cause the skin to appear yellowish.
c. Disease may affect skin color.
Healing of Wounds and Burns (page 185)
Skin injuries trigger inflammation. The affected area becomes red, warm, swollen, and tender.
1. A cut in the epidermis is filled in by dividing epithelial cells. Clots close deeper cuts, sometimes leaving a scar where connective tissue replaces skin. Granulations form as part of the healing process.
2. A superficial partial-thickness burn heals quickly with no scarring. The area is warm and red. A burn penetrating to the dermis is a deep partial-thickness burn. It blisters. Deeper skin structures help heal this more serious type of burn. A full-thickness burn is the most severe and may require a skin graft.
Life-Span Changes (page 187)
2. Due to changes in the number of sweat glands and shrinking capillary beds in the skin, elderly people are less able to tolerate the cold and cannot regulate heat.
3. Older skin has a diminished ability to activate vitamin D necessary for skeletal health.
1. What special problems would result from the loss of 50% of a person's functional skin surface? How might this person's environment be modified to compensate partially for such a loss?
2. A premature infant typically lacks subcutaneous adipose tissue. Also, the surface area of an infant's body is relatively large compared to its volume. How do you think these factors affect the ability of an infant to regulate its body temperature?
3. As a rule, a superficial partial-thickness burn is more painful than one involving deeper tissues. How would you explain this observation?
4. Which of the following would result in the more rapid absorption of a drug: a subcutaneous injection or an intradermal injection? Why?
5. What methods might be used to cool the skin of a child experiencing a high fever? For each method you list, identify the means by which it promotes heat loss— radiation, conduction, convection, or evaporation.
6. How would you explain to an athlete the importance of keeping the body hydrated when exercising in warm weather?
7. Everyone's skin contains about the same number of melanocytes even though people come in many different colors. How is this possible?
8. How is skin peeling after a severe sunburn protective? How might a fever be protective?
9. Why would collagen and elastin added to skin creams be unlikely to penetrate the skin—as some advertisements imply they do?
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