Anatomy of the Digestive System

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Alimentary Canal

Another name for the GI Tract; it contains the mouth, esophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine, rectum & anus. These organs directly process & digest food.

Accessory Organs

Salivary glands, Liver, Gallbladder, & Pancreas; These organs NEVER touch food directly, but they release various enzymes & fluids to help the digestion process

Ingestion

Process by which food/fluid enters the mouth

Absorption

Process by which nutrients are taken into the small intestine

Defacation

Process by which indigestible material is removed from the digestive tract

Incisors

Front teeth of the mouth; they are responsible for biting

Canines

Also known as Bicuspids, these teeth have sharp, pointy edges that tear food

Premolars (Cuspids) & Molars

Teeth found near the back of the mouth that help to grind food

Enamel

The protective white covering on the crown of the tooth

Crown

The upper portion of the tooth that is exposed above the gum

Root

The lower portion of the tooth that is connected to the jawbone below the gum

Dentin

The secondary layer of the tooth, deep to the enamel

Pulp

The fleshy part of the tooth that contains nerve endings and blood vessels

Lingual Frenulum

The piece of tissue that attaches the tongue to the floor of the mouth

Sublingual Glands

Salivary glands found under the tongue

Submandibular Glands

Salivary glands found under the jaw

Parotid Glands

Salivary glands found near the cheek/ear

Pharynx

The throat

Esophagus

The food tube that connects the mouth to the stomach

Bolus

The ball of food formed after it is chewed by the teeth and mixed with saliva

Epiglottis

The piece of cartilage that closes over the trachea when swallowing to prevent food from "going down the wrong pipe"

Peristalsis

Series of wave-like muscle contractions that moves food through the digestive tract (mainly the esophagus and intestines)

Gastroesophageal Sphincter

Muscle that connects the esophagus and stomach, and helps keep the stomach contents in the stomach

Cardia

Portion of the stomach that surrounds the opening

Fundus

Portion of the stomach that is found to the left of the cardia

Body of the Stomach

Portion of the stomach that is found in the center of the stomach, below the Fundus

Pylorus

Narrow, inferior region of the stomach

Rugae

Large gastric folds inside the stomach that smooth out when the stomach fills with food so it can stretch

Chyme

Pasty fluid that is a combination of partially digested food and gastric juice

Pyloric Sphinchter

The muscle that slowly releases chyme from the stomach into the small intestine

Duodenum

1st part of the small intestines that attach to the stomach

Jejunum

Midsection of the small intestine

Ileum

Last part of the small intestine that attaches to the large intestines

Villi

Fingerlike projectsion inside the tube of the small intestine that further increase surface area

Microvilli

Microscopic projections found on the villi of the small intestines

Mesentery

The thin tissue on the outside of the small intestine that connects the digestive system with the cardiovascular system; it is filled with blood vessels to carry the absorbed nutrients into the bloodstream

Small Intestine

Part of the digestive system responsible for absorbing the nutrients that are in food

Stomach

Digestive organ that is responsible for temporarily storing food and mixing it with gastric juices to break it down

Large Intestine

Digestive organ that is responsible for removing all of the indigestible material from the digestive system, as well as re-absorbing water and making Vitamin K

Liver

Digestive organ that MAKES bile, in addition to filtering the blood, storing various Vitamins & Minerals, and regulating blood components

Pancreas

Digestive organ that regulates the hormones Insulin and Glucagon

Gall Bladder

Digestive organ that STORES bile until it is needed by the small intestine

Hepatocytes

Specialized cells in the liver that make bile

Glycogen

Storage form of glucose

Acini

Specialized cells in the pancreas that secrete pancreatic juice

Pancreatic Islets (Islets of Langerhans)

Specialized cells in the pancreas that secrete Insulin & Glucagon

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