Topic: Functions Of Skeleton In Man
The functions of skeleton in man include:
1. Support: The rigid framework of the skeleton gives support to the body. The vertebral column, pelvic girdle and pectoral girdle provides a framework by which the viscera can be supported. As a result, the organs are prevented from crushing each other and the shape of the body is maintained. The vertebral column or backbone forms a pillar-like structure to which the girdles and ribs are attached.
2. Protection: The skeleton protects important and delicate organs of the body. The skull forms a protective covering for the delicate tissue of the brain. It also houses the complicated structures of the inner ear and eyeball. The vertebral column protects the spinal cord. The rib-cage protects all the important organs of the thorax such as the heart, lungs and blood vessels. Pelvic girdle protects abdominal organs especially the urinary bladder and the female reproductive organs.
3. Movement: The whole skeleton is made up of several pieces of bones which are jointed and brings about movement. The skeleton provides a base for the attachment of muscles which brings about movement of the body and limbs and it gives them the ability to bend and twist in any desired direction. The contraction and relaxation of the muscles attached to bones also bring about movement.
4. Respiration: The skeleton also aids in respiration. The thoracic bone of the ribs, caged together with the muscles attached to them, assists in respiration (i.e. Inspiration and expiration).
5. Manufacture of blood cells: The white and red blood cells are manufactured in the marrow of long bones.
6. Muscles attachment: Skeleton provides places for the attachment of muscles. Muscles are attached to bones by means of tendons.
7. Shape: The skeleton also provides or gives shape to the body. It enables organisms to be easily recognised by the shape given by the skeleton.
8. Storage of Mineral Salt: The skeleton also helps to store important mineral salts such as calcium and phosphorus, hence some bones are sources of food or minerals for some animals, e.g. Bone meal as livestock feed.