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The Tired Swimmer

A Case Study on the Nervous System


Author(s)

Allison Russo
Department of Biology
Villanova University
Morgan Falk
Department of Biology
Villanova University
Philip J. Stephens
Department of Biology
Villanova University
phil.stephens@villanova.edu

Abstract

Annie is on a college swimming scholarship. Recently she has been feeling tired and her times have been getting slower. She has also noticed that her vision is often blurred. Concerned, she goes to see her doctor over the mid-term break and is referred to a neurologist, who finds that Annie is suffering from something more than just fatigue. This interrupted case study takes students through a series of stages that describe Annie's problems and symptoms. Students use their knowledge of nerve and muscle physiology to fit the pieces together and determine what is wrong with Annie. The case was developed for use in a one-semester animal physiology course that is taken by sophomore and junior science majors. It could also be used in an anatomy and physiology course.


Objectives

  • To understand nerve and muscle function.
  • To understand the function of chemical synapses.
  • To understand the role of acetylcholine receptors.
  • To determine how the protagonist’s problem can produce a decline in nerve-muscle function.

Keywords

Nerve function; muscle function; acetylcholine receptor; chemical synapse; mammalian spinal cord; neuromuscular junction; myasthenia gravis

Topical Areas

N/A

Educational Level

High school, Undergraduate lower division

Format

PDF

Type / Methods

Interrupted

Language

English

Subject Headings

Physiology  |   Neuroscience  |  


Date Posted

06/10/05

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