The human body consists of several organ systems that are based on body functions e.g. lungs, heart, digestive system, etc. Each organ works differently but we will attempt to see the commonality in the functioning and rooting it to identify how Physics plays a role in the functioning of the key organs. Once the Physics-based functionality of few organs is understood, the same can be extrapolated to remaining organs in general and the human body in specific.
To dissect the functionality, things that form the baseline of all the organs is the existence of organic and biochemical molecules in every organ of the human body. Further, the human body is made up of 80% water viz., of the H2O molecules. The other major chemical elements found in the human body are Sodium, Potassium, Calcium, Iron, Carbon, Nitrogen, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Chlorine, etc. These different elements move throughout the body via the blood and not only provide infrastructure and in the forming of bones, unique tissues for specific organs, muscles, bone marrow, etc. but also are critical in the functioning of these organs. For example, the tissues which make bones and tooth require more concentration of calcium in comparison to the tissues which ultimately make say the heart or lung or liver or brain, etc. Sodium, a positively charged ion, is a good example that is integrally involved in several body functions. It regulates the total amount of water in the body and the transport of sodium into and out of individual cells carrying electrical signals plays a role in critical body functions. Many processes in the body involving the brain, nervous system, heart, and muscles require electrical signals for communication. The movement of sodium is critical in the generation of these electrical signals.
These elements travel as ions+ across the body through the veins and arteries carrying blood. Recall, according to Physics, ions carry an electric charge. Hence the human body can be understood as a composition of circulating ions that give rise to the generation of an electric and magnetic field. So, the electric field thus developed within the human body should also give rise to electric potential. And one should be able to measure it howsoever small it might be, based on the availability of today’s sophisticated instruments, developed on the basic principles and laws of electricity.
This sounds very interesting then. The next obvious question that comes to mind is: How can any evidence of the creation of such an electric field and potential in a human body be confirmed? Well, it can not only be measured but is the basis of ECG (Echocardiographic) machines function to monitor how the heart muscles are performing as the electric potential changes across the heart, with every heartbeat.
Let us in subsequent blogs discuss Heart as an Organ and ECG as the first diagnostic machine.
April 11, 2021