What is Musculoskeletal System?

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The musculoskeletal system comprises bones, muscles, tendons, ligaments, and cartilage. They work together to support your weight, maintain your posture and move you.

Bones protect organs and tissues, store calcium and phosphorus, and produce blood cells (red and white). They also help regulate the balance of minerals in your body.

Bones

The musculoskeletal system is your body’s central framework, composed of bones and connective tissue. The system allows you to move and also protects your organs, which need care, like many services like musculoskeletal institute.

Bones are rigid structures part of your skeleton (the parts of your body that help you stand and move). They give your body shape, support it, protect organs, produce blood cells, and store minerals.

Most people have between 206 and 213 bones in their bodies by adulthood. They are divided into five categories based on their shapes and their functions:

Short bones, which are long and flat or curved, provide strength and support for your body. Examples of these are the ribs, spine, and ileum.

A bone’s inside is covered with a tough outer membrane called the periosteum. This outer layer contains tunnels and canals blood vessels run through to nourish the bone.

Inside the periosteum are two types of tissue: compact and cancellous tissue. The tight tissue is more complex than the cancellous tissue and makes up most of the outside of the bone.

The cartilage in the periosteum is specialized, gristly connective tissue that cushions the surface of your bones. Cartilage also protects your bones from friction.

Muscles

Muscles are made of thousands of stretchy fibers connecting your body’s bones, tendons, and ligaments. They support your weight, help you move, sit upright and stay still. Some muscles are specialized for specific jobs, such as allowing you to breathe and digest food.

Your body has more than 600 muscles, which work together to move and lift your body weight. They also pump blood throughout your body and are essential for posture.

Some muscles contract voluntarily, while others are involuntary. They are controlled by nerve cells called motor neurons that send signals to the muscle cell.

The brain tells the motor neuron when to send the signal to a specific muscle cell. The motor neuron causes the muscle cell to contract when the signal is received.

A muscle fiber is composed of myosin and actin filaments, which are attached to the ends of long chains of proteins known as sarcomeres. When given the signal to contract, these myosin and actin filaments pull on the sarcomeres, shortening them and causing the muscle fiber to contract.

Muscles are the only tissues in the body that can move to attain the body’s posture. They also provide a slight tension to prevent sudden movements and to help keep the body’s bones and joints from jarring against each other.

Joints

The musculoskeletal system is part of your body that provides form, support, and movement. It consists of bones, joints, muscle tissue, and ligaments connecting bone to bone.

Joints move your bones to allow movement (articulation). They can be partially movable, freely movable, or immovable.

A freely movable joint allows movement in all directions. This is the most common type of joint found in your hip, shoulders, elbows, knees, and wrists.

Cartilaginous joints are a particular type of joint that connects bones with cartilage, which helps prevent friction between the ends of the bones and reduces stress on the joints. There are two cartilaginous joints: synchondroses, which only use hyaline cartilage, and symphyses, which include hyaline cartilage but also have fibrocartilage.

In a synchondroses joint, the hyaline cartilage covers the end of one bone, and the fibrocartilage covers the other. In a symphysis, the fibrocartilage connects the bones through a thin membrane that extends from each end of the cartilage and over the bone.

Freely movable joints move in many directions because they are filled with synovial fluid, which acts as a lubricant to reduce friction between the bones and allow movement. However, they are a part of the skeletal system and can be injured, causing pain and restricted movement.

Cartilage

Cartilage is a tissue that lines your joints supports other tissues, and connects bones. It also provides a cushion that reduces stress on the underlying bone ends, which can cause aches and pains in the joints.

Your body has three types of cartilage: hyaline, elastic and fibrous. Hyaline cartilage is the most common in the ribs, nose, and larynx. It’s a hydrated, fiber-reinforced gel composed of chondrocytes, collagen fibers (type II), non-collagenous proteins, and proteoglycan aggregates.

It’s 70% to 80% water by weight. This makes it viscoelastic and able to withstand high osmotic swelling pressure.

The cartilage structure is vital in its function: it helps your joints maintain their shape as you move to allow your muscles to contract and relax without causing damage to the underlying bone. It also acts as a lubricant to keep your bones moving smoothly.

When cartilage becomes damaged, doctors may use tissue grafts to repair it. These can come from other parts of your body, such as a bone or a piece of healthy cartilage from a non-weight-bearing area.

The most common type of cartilage in the human body is hyaline, which forms the lining of your joints and caps the ends of your bones. It comprises chondrocytes, collagen, and a large protein called aggrecan.

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