Understanding the structure and function of the skin

Nurs Times. 2003 Aug;99(31):46-8.


The skin is the body's largest organ. It measures about 1.5-2 m2 in adults and weighs about 15 per cent of total body weight. It is home to up to three million micro-organisms per cm2, which feed on its scales and secretions. Understanding this fascinating organ's functions will help us to assess patients' skin and evaluate its potential for healing following injury or disease.

MeSH terms

  • Body Temperature
  • Health Status
  • Humans
  • Skin / injuries*
  • Skin Physiological Phenomena*
  • Temperature
  • Wound Healing*