The role of physiology of organ system and homeostasis is an essential milestone in the practice of nursing worldwide. Physiology is simply a science that deals with normal vital processes of the human body, especially as to how they function, their biochemical composition and how they are affected by drugs and diseases. There are more than 7 organ systems in the human body. Prominent of which are the cardiovascular (CVS), central nervous system (CNS) and the respiratory system (RS).
A thorough knowledge of these systems is pivotal in the practice of clinical nursing. There are classical symptoms such as headache, dizziness, syncope, peculiar to the CNS. Pedal edema, early satiety, anorexia, breathlessness which is peculiar in the CVS and chest pain, cough, hoarseness of voice, nasal discharge which are all features of the RS. A nurse on duty might confront a patient with only these symptoms after which an action must be taken pertaining to position, drugs, infusion therapy and nutrition in order to preserve life.
Homeostasis is a unit of physiology concerned with the state of equilibrium in the body with respect to various functions and to the chemical compositions of the fluids and tissues. It is concerned with the balance between loss and gain in the body. An example of the application of practical homeostasis can be seen in a patient bleeding profusely, who has lost 3liters of the about 5. 5 liters in the body in an accident and later rushed to the emergency section of a hospital.
It takes a nurse who knows the features of hemorrhage (loss without gain) to save such a patient. There could also be certain intrinsic defects such as prolongation of the bleeding time (normal is 2-7 mins), clotting time (5-8 mins) which only a nurse with a grounded physiology can discern and solve. Failure to recognize prolongation of the bleeding time can culminate in serious bleeding disorders which may lead to hypovolemic shock while prolongation of the clotting time can lead to a medical emergency, disseminated intravascular coagulopathy (DIC).