Definition, Function, and Disorders of the Excretory System in Humans

The Excretory System in Humans – Hello Readers friends , do you know the excretory system? There is a biological process in the human body called the excretory system. The excretory system is the process of removing metabolic waste products that are no longer used by the body. These substances can be carbon dioxide, urine, urea, sweat, and other toxic or toxic compounds.

If poisons or toxins are not removed immediately, all these substances accumulate in the body and can cause health problems. To get rid of this poison, there are several organs in the body that help excretion.

These organs include: organs namely the lungs, skin, liver, large intestine and kidneys. Each of these excretory organs has a different function and way of working to remove waste products and toxins from the body.

In general, the excretory system can be understood as the process of removing metabolic waste products that are no longer used by organisms. The remnants of this metabolism are in the form of toxic compounds or poisons, if not disposed of it can interfere with the function of organs in the body.

Definition of Excretory System

The excretory system is the system responsible for processing and metabolizing waste products and toxins and then removing them from the body. Indeed, these waste products and toxins can cause health problems if they are not removed from the body.

In the human excretory system, there are several organs responsible for the cleansing process such as the skin, lungs, liver, large intestine and kidneys. Each organ has a different function and way of working to remove metabolic waste and toxins from your body.

Understanding the Excretory System According to Experts

Excretion is the process of removing waste products of metabolism, either as liquid or gas. Residues in the form of urine are excreted by the kidneys, sweat is excreted through the skin, bile is excreted by the liver, and CO2 is excreted through the lungs.

These substances must be removed from the body because if not removed they can interfere with and even poison the body. Apart from excretion, there are also defecation and secretions. Defecation is the removal of waste products from the digestive process in the form of feces (feces) through the anus.

Meanwhile, the secretions released by cells and glands are in the form of latex and are still used by the body for other processes such as enzymes and hormones (Pratiwi et al., 2009: 58).

The urinary system consists of: The kidneys excrete urine. The ureters carry urine from the kidneys to the bladder. The bladder functions as a reservoir. The urethra drains urine from the bladder (Pearce, 2002: 25).

Functions of the Excretory System

As previously mentioned, there are several organs in the body that function for the excretory system. Below is a complete review of how the body’s system works to remove metabolic waste from the body. The following is an explanation of each organ in the body:



1. Liver

A rather large excretory organ is the liver, weighing about a kilogram. This organ is very important for the body’s metabolism because it acts as a defense organ and the immune system. Located in the upper right part of the abdominal cavity, just below the diaphragm.

In the body’s work system, the liver converts ammonia into urea. Then, urea which is processed in the liver will be excreted through the urinary system to the kidneys through urine. Apart from ammonia, other substances secreted or excreted by the liver are toxic substances in the blood, such as from drinking alcohol or drugs.

2. Kidneys

The kidneys are organs located below the back of the rib cage, near the middle of the back on either side of the spine. Kidney is one of the most important organs in the human body.

The kidney has the following characteristics, consisting of two parts (left and right). Simply put, the kidneys are a pair of organs that measure 10 to 12 centimeters or the size of a fist. Furthermore, the kidney has about a million nephrons which are very small and filter blood relatively small, but have enormous benefits.

The first organ responsible for the performance of the excretory system is the kidneys. This organ is located on both sides of the spine, precisely at the back of the abdominal cavity. Kidneys are shaped like kidney beans and have a reddish-brown color. Humans have a pair of kidneys located on the right and left sides of the body.

The function of the kidneys is to filter food waste, drugs or toxins from the blood. In addition, the kidneys also play a role in controlling fluid balance and electrolyte levels in the body. If your body has excess salt or minerals, your kidneys will excrete them. The collected waste will then be converted into urine and will come out when you urinate.

3. Colon

The next organ that acts as the excretory system is the large intestine. The large intestine is responsible for absorbing water and any remaining nutrients that the small intestine cannot digest. Once absorbed, the remaining food and drink is converted into feces and then excreted through the anus when you have a bowel movement.

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4. Lungs

The next organ with an excretory system is the lungs. Its existence is the main support for the human respiratory system. During breathing, the lungs are responsible for transferring the oxygen obtained from the air into the blood.

Oxygenated blood will be distributed to all tissues and organs of the body to function properly. Upon receiving oxygen, every cell in the body produces carbon dioxide as a metabolite which is then excreted.

Carbon dioxide is a toxic substance that can be harmful to health if it accumulates in the blood. During the cleansing process, carbon dioxide is carried by the blood to the lungs and exhaled when you exhale. Coughing or sneezing is also a natural mechanism of the body that involves the lungs and respiratory tract to expel harmful chemicals or gases, dust, germs, viruses and foreign objects into the respiratory system.

In the excretory system, the lungs have the function of removing carbon dioxide (CO2) and water vapor (H2O). This carbon dioxide and water vapor are then released and expelled from the lungs through the nasal passages. Instead, oxygen is taken.

The amount of oxygen absorbed by the air varies with demand and is often affected by many different things. Call it the type of work, body size, amount and type of food consumed. As a result of metabolic waste, CO2 is transported by blood in three ways, namely:

  1. Carbon dioxide dissolves in the plasma and forms carbonic acid with anhydrase enzymes (contributing 7% of total CO2);
  1. Carbon dioxide is bound to hemoglobin as carbomino hemoglobin (23% of total CO2)
  1. Carbon dioxide is bound to a bicarbonate ion group (HCO3) through a chloride exchange chain process (70% of total CO2).

In the body, the main function of the lungs is actually the respiratory organ, but because this organ also excretes metabolic waste, the lungs also play a role in the excretory system. Carbon dioxide and water from metabolism in the tissues are carried by the blood through the blood vessels to the heart.

From the heart, it is pumped to the lungs to diffuse into the alveoli. In addition, H2O and CO2 can diffuse into or be secreted into the alveoli of the lungs because the alveoli open many thin membrane capillaries.

5. Skin

Human skin contains three to four million sweat glands. These glands are scattered throughout the body, but are most numerous on the palms, feet, face and armpits.

Sweat glands are divided into two types, namely eccrine glands and apocrine glands. The eccrine glands are in direct contact with the surface of the skin and secrete a watery, odorless sweat.

Meanwhile, apocrine glands secrete sweat which contains fat and is concentrated and is found in hair follicles, such as the armpits and scalp.

There are several types of toxins that are secreted through the sweat glands in the skin, including metals, bisphenol A, polychlorinated biphenyls, urea, phthalates, and bicarbonates. Not only remove toxins, sweat glands in the skin also kill and eliminate bacteria.

The process of breaking down toxic compounds is called liver detoxification. As an organ that plays a role in the excretory system – because it secretes bile and urea, the liver has several functions, including:

Production of bile: Bile is a product of the breakdown of red blood cells. This resin consists of two components, bile salts and bile dyes. Bile salts emulsify fats, while bile dyes form faeces and urine, which are excreted with the yellow latex.

Urea and Ammonia Products: Urea and Ammonia are protein breakdown products that must be excreted from the body because they are toxic. This amount of urea will be absorbed into the blood, filtered by the kidneys and excreted from the body through urine.

Meanwhile, ammonia will be bound to ornithine and then excreted through the urine or into the bile. Ammonia is what makes urine smell sharp.

Breaking down old red blood cells: The products of this breakdown of red blood cells are called globin, iron and heme. Because the iron and globin itself will be reprocessed to make new hemoglobin, which can be reused by the body.

While heme will be converted into bilirubin and biliverdin in the intestine will be oxidized to urobilin, which is used as a urine and feces dye.

Synthesis of several substances: Apart from acting as a place to produce bile, the liver also functions to synthesize substances. Indeed, the liver secretes several enzymes, one of which is the enzyme arginase. This enzyme has the effect of converting arginine to urea and ornifi can increase NH3 and CO2.

6. Epidermis (Ari Skin Layer)

The epidermis is the outermost and very thin layer of the skin. The epidermis consists of the stratum corneum and a layer of scales. The stratum corneum is a layer of dead cells that sloughs off easily and doesn’t contain blood vessels or nerve fibers, so it can’t bleed when it’s detached.

While the squamous layer is the layer below the stratum corneum, which consists of living and dividing cells. The scab contains pigments that determine skin color and protect cells from sun damage.

7. Bronchus

The bronchi, commonly known as the tracheal branches, have the function of removing foreign bodies and debris that enter the respiratory tract. This function is performed by cilia on the walls of the bronchi.

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The main bronchi are the first branches of the trachea, consisting of the right main bronchus (the bronchus leading to the right lung) and the left main bronchus (the bronchi leading to the left lung). Moreover, bronchial branches will become bronchioles.

8. Dermis

The dermis is the layer of skin beneath the epidermis. This layer is thicker than the epidermis and is made up of several tissues, including capillaries that deliver nutrients to the hair roots and skin cells.

Sweat glands are responsible for the production of sweat, sebaceous glands will produce oil so that the skin and hair do not dry out, blood vessels to circulate blood to all cells or tissues, nerve endings including taste, touch, pain, heat, and touch nerve endings; and hair follicles, which contain the hair root, shaft, and sebaceous glands.

9. Underlayer Skin

This layer is located beneath the dermis, between the layers of connective tissue under the skin, and the dermis is lined with fat cells. And this fat plays a role in protecting the body from shocks, as a source of energy and maintaining body temperature.

With so many components in the human body, from muscles, senses, brain, heart and much more, each with a function, my favorite Encyclopedia: The Human Body is here to help Readers find it all!.

10. Trachea

The trachea is the continuation of the airways from the larynx and serves as an intermediary between the larynx and the rest of the lungs. The trachea is also the boundary between the lower and upper respiratory systems. The upper respiratory system includes the nose and larynx.

Excretory System Disorders

1. Kidney Stones

Kidney stones are a disorder in which calcium salts are deposited in the cavities of the kidneys, renal tract or bladder. Kidney stones appear as insoluble crystals. These deposits are formed because a person consumes too much mineral salt and consumes too little water.

2. Jaundice

Jaundice is an illness caused by a blocked bile duct that prevents bile from flowing into the duodenum. Bile and also then in the blood and the color of the blood becomes yellow.

The skin of people with jaundice will be pale yellow. Then the whites of the eyeballs and nails are also yellowish.

3. Diabetes Mellitus

A person can get diabetes because the pancreas does not produce insulin or produces little insulin. Insulin is a hormone that controls the amount of sugar (glucose) in the blood. In this condition, the concentration of glucose in the patient’s urine and blood is very high, so care must be taken not to affect other diseases.

4. Prickly heat

Prickly heat is a disorder that attacks the skin organs. Prickly heat occurs due to clogged sweat glands. This condition causes the skin to appear red and accompanied by itching.

5. Albuminuria

Albuminuria is a kidney disease characterized by high levels of albumin in the urine. Albumin is protein, you guys. This condition occurs because there is too much albumin because part of the glomerulus plays a role in filtering blood.

6. Nephritis

Nephritis is a disorder of the glomerulus. Nephritis is caused by infection with the Streptococcus nephritis bacteria. This infection can cause acidic urine and urea to back up into the veins, as well as water retention in the feet due to poor water absorption.

7. Urethral

Apart from the kidneys, organs that can interfere with the excretory system are the ureters. The ureter itself is a tube-shaped organ. The ureters are also known to have muscles that are used to help the passage of urine from the kidneys to the bladder.

One of the diseases that can attack the ureter is urethritis. Urethritis can be defined as inflammation of the ureter caused by a bacterial or viral infection.

For patients, men and women have very different symptoms. Symptoms of urethritis in men are usually manifested by the appearance of blood in the urine and semen. Not only that, when you urinate, you also feel a burning sensation. While the symptoms of urethritis in women that can be observed are lower abdominal pain, pain when urinating, fever.

8. Pneumonia

Pneumonia is a disease of the excretory system in which the lungs function as a place for exchanging carbon dioxide and oxygen. Pneumonia is caused by a bacterial, viral, or fungal infection in the alveoli. As a result, oxygen becomes difficult to enter because the alveoli where exchange is filled with fluid.

9. Asthma

One condition that often attacks the lungs is asthma. Asthma is a lung disorder that may be familiar to many people. Asthma is caused by narrowing of the air passages in the lungs. People with asthma often experience shortness of breath or even chest tightness.

Asthma is a non-communicable disease, it can only be transmitted to children. Asthmatics are often caused by a bad air environment. Therefore, the first way to treat someone who is experiencing an asthma attack is to give medication to relieve the respiratory tract.

Some of these medications include injections (hydrocortisone), ventolin syrup (salbutamol), or nebulizers (salbutamol gas). Also discuss the function of the excretory system in humans. There are five human excretory systems, namely the kidneys, liver, colon, skin and lungs. By always maintaining the health of your internal organs, you can have a healthy body.