Fundamentals of Human Physiology – Even though I started teaching physiology in the mid-1960s, today I still am awestruck at the miraculous intricacies and efficiency of body function. No machine can perform even a portion of natural body function as effectively.

My goal in writing physiology textbooks is not only to help students learn about how the body works but also to share my enthusiasm for the subject matter. Most of us, even infants, have a natural curiosity about how our bodies work. When a baby fi rst discovers it can control its own hands, it is fascinated and spends many hours manipulating them in front of its face. By capitalizing on students’ natural curiosity about themselves, I try to make physiology a subject they can enjoy learning.

Fundamentals of Human Physiology

Even the most tantalizing subject can be difficult to comprehend if not effectively presented, however. Th erefore, this book –Fundamentals of Human Physiology has a logical, understandable format with an emphasis on how each concept is an integral part of the entire subject. Too often, students view the components of a physiology course as isolated entities; by understanding how each component depends on the others, a student can appreciate the integrated functioning of the human body. The text focuses on the mechanisms of body function from cells to systems and is organized around the central theme of homeostasis—how the body meets changing demands while maintaining the internal constancy necessary for all cells and organs to function.

Fundamentals of Human Physiology is a carefully condensed version of my Human Physiology: From Cells to Systems. Th is new fourth edition of Fundamentals of Human Physiology is of manageable length and depth while providing scientifi cally sound coverage of the fundamental concepts of physiology and incorporating pedagogical features that make it interesting and comprehensible.

Because this book – Fundamentals of Human Physiology is intended as an introduction and, for most students, may be their only exposure to a formal physiology text, all aspects of physiology receive broad coverage. Materials were selected for inclusion on a “need-to-know” basis, so the book is not cluttered with unnecessary detail. Instead, content is restricted to relevant information needed to understand basic physiologic concepts.

No assumptions regarding prerequisite courses have been made. Since anatomy is not a prerequisite course, enough relevant anatomy is integrated within the text to make the inseparable relation between structure and function meaningful. Furthermore, new pedagogical features have been added to make this fourth edition even more approachable by students with limited background.

New information based on recent discoveries has been included in all chapters. Students can be assured of the timeliness and accuracy of the material presented. Th is edition is the most extensive revision yet, taking into account new discoveries in the fi eld as well as clarifying, modifying, and simplifying as needed. Some controversial ideas and hypotheses are presented to illustrate that physiology is a dynamic, changing discipline.

This text is designed to promote understanding of the basic principles and concepts of physiology rather than memorization of details. Th e text is written in simple, straightforward language, and every effort has been made to ensure smooth reading through good transitions, logical reasoning, and integration of ideas throughout the text.

Medical Free Book: Fundamentals of Human Physiology



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