Skip to main content
[ "article:topic-guide", "showtoc:no", "license:ccbysa", "authorname:mgrewal", "Integumentary System" ]
Biology LibreTexts

13: Integumentary System

  • Page ID
    16801
  • This chapter describes the structure and functions of the epidermis and dermis, hair, and nails. In addition, the chapter outlines types of skin cancer and risk factors for skin cancer.

    • 13.1: Case Study - Skin Cancer
      Summer sun may feel good on your body, but its invisible UV rays wreak havoc on your skin. Exposing the skin to UV light causes photo-aging: premature wrinkling, brown discolorations, and other unattractive signs of sun exposure. Even worse, UV light increases your risk of skin cancer.
    • 13.2: Introduction to the Integumentary System
      This is Maud Stevens Wagner, a tattoo artist who is pictured above in 1907. Clearly, tattoos are not just a late 20th and early 21st century trend. They have been popular in many eras and cultures.
    • 13.3: Skin
      The epidermis is the outer of the two main layers of the skin, the inner layer being the dermis. It averages about 0.10 mm thick and is much thinner than the dermis. The epidermis is thinnest on the eyelids (0.05 mm) and thickest on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet (1.50 mm). The epidermis covers almost the entire body surface. It is continuous with, but structurally distinct from, the mucous membranes that line the mouth, anus, urethra, and vagina.
    • 13.4: Hair and Nails
      This blue and green spiky hairstyle makes quite a fashion statement. Many people spend a lot of time and money on their hair, even if they don’t have such an exceptional hairstyle as this one. Besides its display value, hair actually has important physiological functions.
    • 13.5: Case Study Skin Cancer Conclusion and Chapter Summary
      Skin cancer begins in the outer layer of skin, the epidermis. There are three common types of skin cancer: basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma.

    Skin and its layers. Shown is a drawing of the layers of skin and associated glands and vessels (epidermis, dermis, fatty tissue, blood vessels, follicle, oil gland, sweat gland).Image used with permission (Public Domain; National Cancer Institute; NIH).