Chapters 4 and  5 – The Integumentary System - Skin


An “on your own” unit for GC 1135


In many ways your skin is similar to a large bag – it is sometimes called “the bag you live in.”  It keeps the outside separated from the inside of you body.  For example,  it keeps out bacteria, viruses, dust, etc, and it keeps in your guts, blood, muscles, and much more.  When there is a break in your skin and  your insides become exposed to the outside world – stuff like bacteria can get in and cause infections.


This worksheet is intended to introduce you to the very basics of skin anatomy and physiology.  It will involve a series of questions that can easily be answered by looking at chapters 4 and 5 in your text.  Along with this worksheet, there will be a short Power Point slide show – check the weekly schedule / Oi! for details.



From Chapter 4 – The end of the histology chapter. - Page 90

What is inflammation?  How does it related to tissue repair?

(Note: key symptoms of inflammation: redness, heat, swelling, pain, and disturbance of function)



What are the five major symptoms of inflammation?  Why does skin become red during inflammation?  (Hint: Figure 4.9)  What is “pus?” (What’s in pus?)




What are the functions of histamines and anti-histamines?  How are they related to inflammation?




What is the difference between a clot and a scab?  (page 92)



Tissues and Aging (page 93)

What are the effects of aging in terms of the following events:


Number of neurons

Cell division

Red blood cell synthesis

Injury repair


Walls of arteries


System Pathology – Cancer (page 94)


Explain how the following terms relate to cancer, and specifically, skin cancer.





Benign and malignant





What does the phrase “ability to metastasize” mean?


How does skin cancer travel from one area of the body to another area of the body?  (How does it move to “distant sites?”)


True or False:  People under 40 never have malignant melanoma. 



Chapter 5

What are the five functions of the skin?



Hypodermis - Page 100

What is the relationship between the hypodermis and fat?  What is the function of this fat layer?  Is the hypodermis considered a component of the skin?




Skin - Page 100

What are the two layers that make up the skin?


What are the major differences between the dermis and the hypodermis?




What is the function of collagen and elastic fibers in the dermis?  Explain the relationship between cleavage lines, collagen and stretch marks.



What type of epithelial tissue makes-up the epidermis? 


What is keratin?  Are the very outer layers of the epidermis living or dead?  What is the stratum corneum (which layer of the epidermis is the stratum corneum?)



Skin Color - (page 102) 

What three factors are involved in determining skin color? 



Explain the relationship between skin color and melanin.



Is melanin one pigment?  Or many?  What three factors determine melanin concentration? 


What is albinism?



There is much more to this chapter, but I want to make this an easy section of the course.  There are loads of sites on the internet that provide information on such things as tattoos, acne, warts, etc.  One of my favorite sites is “Skinema” – which shows skin conditions in actors and actresses, and different movie characters.  Check it out if you wish: 


(Visiting this web site is optional)