Human Anatomy and Physiology : Identifying Digestive and Excretory Organs

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for Human Anatomy and Physiology

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Example Questions

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Example Question #1 : Organs

Which portion of the stomach allows undigested food to be stored following a large meal?

Possible Answers:

Fundus

Body

Cardia

Pylorus

Correct answer:

Fundus

Explanation:

The fundus is the protruding upper left portion of the stomach. In the event that a great deal of food enters the stomach, the fundus will allow excess food to be stored until it is ready to be digested in the small intestine.

The body of the stomach is where most physical digestion occurs and some chemical digestion takes place. The cardia is the region joining the esophagus to the stomach and is characterized by the cardiac sphincter. The pylorus joins the stomach to the small intestine and contains the pyloric sphincter.

Example Question #2 : Identifying Digestive And Excretory Organs

What structures may be compressed between the superior mesenteric artery and the abdominal aorta?

Possible Answers:

Left gonadal vein, tail of pancreas

Splenic vein, third part of duodenum

Inferior vena cava, head of pancreas

Left renal vein, third part of duodenum

Superior mesenteric vein, transverse colon

Correct answer:

Left renal vein, third part of duodenum

Explanation:

The left renal vein and third part of the duodenum lie between the superior mesenteric artery and abdominal aorta.

Compression of the left renal vein will cause pooling of blood in the left gonadal vein and subsequent varicocele formation, known as nutcracker syndrome. Compression of the third part of the duodenum is known as superior mesenteric artery syndrome and will result in malnutrition and symptoms of small bowel obstruction.

The inferior vena cava lies to the right of the abdominal aorta, while the pancreas lies superior and anterior to the superior mesenteric artery. The left gonadal vein drains into the left renal vein and is to the left and inferior to the superior mesenteric artery. The splenic vein lies superior to the superior mesenteric artery and joins with the superior mesenteric vein to form the hepatic portal vein. The transverse colon lies anterior to the superior mesenteric artery.

Example Question #1 : Identifying Digestive And Excretory Organs

Which of the following organs is intraperitoneal?

Possible Answers:

Stomach

Descending colon

Kidneys

Pancreas

Bladder

Correct answer:

Stomach

Explanation:

Only the stomach is intraperitoneal from the listed structures. The peritoneum is a membrane within the abdominal cavity; organs contained within the membrane are considered intraperitoneal and are almost completely covered with visceral peritoneum.

The kidneys are retroperitoneal (posterior to the intraperitoneal space), while the bladder and descending colon are subperitoneal (below the intraperitoneal space). The pancreas is superior to the peritoneum.

Example Question #2 : Identifying Digestive And Excretory Organs

Which of the following organs is involved in mechanical degradation of food, but is not involved in absorption?

Possible Answers:

Large intestine

Jejunum

Duodenum

Ileum

Stomach

Correct answer:

Stomach

Explanation:

The stomach is involved in mechanical degradation of food, as well as a small amount of chemical degradation. Its function is to break food down so that the nutrients and electrolytes from the food can be absorbed in the small intestine and large intestine. The duodenum, ileum, and jejunum are all parts of the small intestine, where the majority of chemical digestion and nutrient absorption takes place. Absorption of water and certain nutrients occurs in the large intestine.

Example Question #3 : Identifying Digestive And Excretory Organs

Which of the following organs synthesizes bile?

Possible Answers:

Duodenum

Liver

Gall bladder

Spleen

Stomach

Correct answer:

Liver

Explanation:

The liver synthesizes bile, however it is stored in the gall bladder. Bile is released into the duodenum of the small intestine in order to emulsify fats and aid in their digestion.

The spleen functions in to filter blood and identify potential pathogens. The stomach is involved in mechanical digestion and secretes pepsinogen to initiate protein digestion.

Example Question #4 : Identifying Digestive And Excretory Organs

Which organ has both an endocrine and digestive fuction?

Possible Answers:

Appendix

Liver

Cecum

Esophagus

Pancreas

Correct answer:

Pancreas

Explanation:

The pancreas functions to secrete the digestive enzymes amylase, lipase, and trypsin, which break down carbohyrdates, lipids, and proteins, respectively. The endocrine role of the pancreas is to secrete the hormones insulin and glucagon, which regulate blood glucose levels.

The function of the appendix is not well classified; it is considered a vestigial structure, which may have once aided in the breakdown of cellulose. The cecum is referred to as the "blind pouch" and is the first part of the ascending colon. The liver functions to manufacture and excrete bile, and removes toxins from the blood. The esophagus transports food that enters the mouth to the stomach. 

Example Question #6 : Organs

What muscular accessory organ has rough, raised, areas called papillae and is connected to the floor of the mouth by the frenulum linguae?

Possible Answers:

Tonsils

Uvula

Epiglottis

Palate

Tongue

Correct answer:

Tongue

Explanation:

The tongue is the organ for taste. The papillae contain the taste buds. The tongue is attached to the hyoid bone, mandible, styloid process, palate, floor of the mouth, pharynx, and epiglottis.

The tonsils are masses of lymphoid tissue at the base of the tongue. The epiglottis is cartilagenous tissue that separates the esophagus from the larynx and trachea. The roof of the mouth is the palate. The uvula closes off the nasopharynx during swallowing. 

Example Question #7 : Organs

What organ is known to have rugal folds and two sphincters?

Possible Answers:

Colon

Ileum

Stomach

Duodenum

Esophagus

Correct answer:

Stomach

Explanation:

The stomach has two openings. The upper is surrounded by the esophageal (cardiac) sphincter, and the lower by the pyloric schincter. These sphincters open and close, allowing food to enter and exit the stomach. The rugae are the folds of mucous membrane on the surface of the stomach.

The esophagus is a tube that transports food from the mouth to the stomach. At the distal end of the esophagus is the esophgeal (cardiac) sphincter. The duodedum is the first part of the small intestine and works to absorb nutrients. The pyloric sphincter opens to empty food into the duodenum. The ileum ends at the ileocecal valve, a sphincter that controls entry into the colon. The colon stores waste products until the anal sphincter opens to allow defecation. 

Example Question #8 : Organs

What triangular-shaped organ normally has a smooth brown surface and three types of circulation?

Possible Answers:

Liver

Parotid gland

Adenoids

Pancreas

Gallbladder

Correct answer:

Liver

Explanation:

The liver is the largest organ in the body. It is roughly triangular, with a smooth brown surface. The liver receives arterial blood through the hepatic artery, venous blood leaves through the hepatic vein, and a third circulatory system, the portal, receives nutrient-rich blood from the gastro-intestinal tract. The liver works to detoxify substances in this blood.

The gallbladder stores bile, which is formed in the liver. Bile is used to digest fatty foods. The pancreas is wedge-shaped and secretes digestive enzymes and hormones. The parotid gland is located inferior and anterior to the ear. This gland secretes saliva. The adenoids are prominences of lymphoid tissue located in the nasopharynx. 

Example Question #9 : Organs

What sac-like structure is normally gray-blue and located posterior to the liver?

Possible Answers:

Pancreas

Bursa

Cecum

Peritoneum

Gallbladder

Correct answer:

Gallbladder

Explanation:

The gallbladder is a sac-like structure that contains bile. Bile is produced by the liver and transported to the gallbladder through the hepatic duct. The gallbladder is located on the posterior of the liver.

The pancreas is wedge-shaped and located located posterior to the stomach. The cecum is a pouch at the beginning of the colon. The appendix is attached to the cecum. The term "bursa" refers to a sac or cavity found in the vicinity of joints. The peritoneum is the membrane lining the abdominal cavity and enclosing the digestive organs. 

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