Glands


  • What types of glands are found in the skin?
The glands that are found in the skin include the sebaceous, sudoriferous (sweat), and ceruminous glands. The sudoriferous gland is divided into two types of sweat glands: eccrine and apocrine sweat glands.



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Apocrine sweat glands’ secretion has an odor due to the metabolization of skin bacteria.
  • What are their respective functions?
The sebaceous gland functions in providing the hair with oils to keep both soft and waterproof. The sudoriferous glands function in regulating the body temperature. The ceruminous gland functions in protection.

  • What layer of the skin are the glands in?
The sebaceous, sudoriferous, and ceruminous glands are found in the dermis.


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Picture of sebaceous gland

  • Where are these glands found in the human body?

  1. Sebaceous glands are holocrine glands that are found/associated with hair follicles.
  2. Sudoriferous glands are exocrine glands that are widespread throughout the skin; particularly the forehead, neck, and back is where eccrine glands are found and axillary regions and the groin for apocrine glands.
  3. Ceruminous glands are modified sweat glands that secrete specific fluid depending on their location. An example of where ceruminous glands can be located is the external ear canal.

  • What does each of these types of glands secrete?

  1. Sebaceous glands secrete an oily mixture known as sebum. Sebum is composed of fatty material and cellular debris and it is used to help keep the hair and skin soft, pliable, and waterproof.
  2. Sudoriferous glands secrete sweat in specific places depending on the gland. Eccrine glands that are found throughout one’s entire life secrete sweat through tube-like ducts called pores. On the other hand, apocrine glands which become active at puberty, secrete sweat in particular places like the axillary regions and groin. Both secrete sweat that cools the area down because although sweat contains salts and wastes, it is mostly made of water.
  3. Ceruminous glands secrete and a specific fluid. In a case where the ceruminous gland is located in the external ear canal, it secretes a substance known as cerumen, or earwax. Cerumen waterproofs the ear canal, kills bacteria, lubricates/cleans the ear.


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Picture of cerumen (earwax)

  • What are some diseases and disorders that affect these glands?

Acne - A common inflammatory condition of the sebaceous glands.

Seborrhea - Hyperactivity of sebaceous glands causing greasy skin and dandruff.


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A case of acne
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