The pericardium is a unique structure that surrounds the heart and serves several important physiological functional roles. Removal of the pericardium or the buildup of fluids within this space will alter hemodynamic performance. Yet, often following open heart surgery, the pericardium is not repaired or closed; the rationale for this is under evaluation. Therapeutic approaches have been directed to exploit the access space that exists between the pericardium and the epicardial surface of the heart. Nevertheless, an important consideration when utilizing animal models to study such biomedical devices is that the pericardium in humans is much thicker than that of most commonly employed animal models.
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This ebook provides an introductory explanation of the workings of the human body, with an effort to draw connections between the body systems and explain their interdependencies. A framework for the book is homeostasis and how the body maintains balance within each system. This is intended as a first introduction to physiology for a college-level course.