ANATOMY


Anatomy of the skin with general consideration homeopathic remedies from the Diseases of the Skin by Frederick Myers Dearborn. …


GENERAL CONSIDERATIONS [General Considerations]

DISEASES OF THE SKIN INCLUDING THE EXANTHEMATA

FOR THE USE OF GENERAL PRACTITIONERS AND ADVANCED STUDENTS BY FREDRICK M. DEARBORN, A.B., M.D.

The skin is a fibroelastic membrane which may be truly called the living envelope of the human body. It is complex in structure and endowed with active and passive functions so that it affords covering and protection to the deeper tissues, and receives impressions from the external world to which it is continually exposed. It is a continuous covering merging into the mucous membranes at all mucocutaneous orifices. It is closely related to the structures beneath through its connective tissue, blood-vessels, nerves and lymphatics.

While the surface is approximately smooth, careful inspection reveals numerous ridges, furrows and pores, variously sized hairs and at the end of the terminal phalanges, hard nail formations. The ridges, just referred to, are caused by the row-like arrangement of the cutaneous papillae and may assume straight, wavy or crescentric lines. The minute depressions known as pores represent the orifices of the follicles and glands of the skin. For the purpose of giving roundness to the angles and curves of the body, and for other more practical reasons, the skin varies greatly in thickness indifferent regions. It is thickest on the buttocks, the palms of the hands and soles of the feet, and thinnest on the eyelids and prepuce. Generally where the areolar tissue is dense and considerable adipose deposit normally exists, the attachment of the skin to the parts beneath is close and firm and its mobility is limited. Where mobility is essential, as around the joints, there is little or no fat and the areolar tissue is loose. Other differences besides that of thickness may be noted as influenced by age, sex, race, health and climate. In fact, there are certain variations in different locations upon the same individual. Thus, the color may range from the fair skin of the blond to the black skin of the negro, from the rosy pink of an infant’s skin to the dark hue of the genitocrural regions of the aged. The patient, which cause the varying color in different races and individuals and under varying circumstances, is located in the deeper protoplasmic areas of the epidermis. The external epidermal layers are composed of transparent flattened epithelial cells which shrivel up into polymorphous scales as they approach the surface and are constantly, although invisibly, thrown off and as constantly renewed from below. It is by this process of continual repair that the epithelial covering of the skin is preserved in a healthy condition by the activity of its own protoplasm. The natural secretion of the skin which continually anoints its surface, making it comparatively impermeable, acts as a passive barrier to a too rapid loss of fluids from within and protects from irritants, variations in temperature and from invasions of bacteria from without.

1. Subcutaneous tissue. 2. Corium. 3. Epidermis. R. Reticular layer of the corium. P (on cut), Papillae of the corium. M, Mucous layer of the epidermis. G. Grandular layer of the epidermis. C. Corneous layer of the epidermis. S. Sebaceous Gland. T (on cut), Sweat-glands. H, Hair. N, Tactile corpuscle. A, B, F, Capillaries supplying fat lobule, sweat-gland, papillae of the hair and papillae of the corium. V, Veins from the papillae of the corium. E, Arrector pili muscles (diagrammatic).

A knowledge of the fundamentals of the anatomy and physiology of the skin is essential in order that the nature of pathological changes in the skin and the curative action of remedies may be understood. Microscopically, the skin is found to be composed of two constant organic parts, the corium and the epidermis. But for practical purposes, a third subdivision, the subcutaneous tissue, is usually described. Several less constant parts such as the sebaceous glands, sweat-glands, hair, nails, pigment, blood-vessels, lymphatics, nerves and muscles must be considered in order to appreciate the complex nature of the skin. For purposes of study, it seems wise to consider the deeper portions before describing those more superficially placed because, by so doing, their mutual relations can be made clearer.

Frederick Dearborn
Dr Frederick Myers DEARBORN (1876-1960)
American homeopath, he directed several hospitals in New York.
Professor of dermatology.
Served as Lieut. Colonel during the 1st World War.
See his book online: American homeopathy in the world war