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Lecture

Health Assessment Session 10 Class Notes

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School
Department
Nursing
Course
NURS 2320U
Professor
A.De La Rocha
Semester
Winter

Description
A dermatome is an area of skin supplied with afferent nerve fibres by a single posterior spinal root. The areas supplied by each nerve are illustrated on page 660 of the textbook. There are 31 pairs of spinal nerves (8 cervical, 12 thoracic, 5 lumbar, 5 sacral, and 1 coccygeal). The spinal nerves are “mixed” nerves because they contain both sensory and motor fibres. The assessment of dermatomes, which are specific skin surfaces and specific skeletal muscles, provides information on PNS function and its integrity with the CNS (Jarvis, 1999). Stroke patients or patients with spinal anesthesia (C- section) may be at risk A reflex arc is a response below the level of consciousness in which sensory afferent fibres carry a message from a receptor, travel through the dorsal root into the spinal cord, synapse in the cord, and send a message through motor efferent fibres to cause a response in the innervated muscle. Reflexes control and permit quick reactions to potentially painful or damaging situations. Reflexes also help the body maintain balance and appropriate muscle tone. There are four types of reflexes: (1) deep tendon (myotatic), (2) superficial, (3) visceral (organic), and (4) pathological (abnormal). The autonomic nervous system mediates unconscious activity and is composed of cranial nerves and spinal nerves. These nerves carry fibres that can be divided functionally into somatic and autonomic fibres. Somatic fibres innervate skeletal (volun
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