What is Fascia and the Three Existing Types

What is Fascia 

A band or sheet of connective tissue, primarily collagen, that sits beneath the skin that attaches, stabilizes, encloses and separates muscles and other internal organs.

Issues arise when Fascia begins to loose its stiffness,  becomes to stiff, has decreased shearing abilities, or has received some kind of trauma that causes it to fail to function effectively. This most often happens after surgery where it has been cut and there is scaring.

Three Layers

Superficial – the outermost layer of the skin in nearly all of the regions of the body and blends with the reticular dermis layer.

Deep – layer of dense fibrous connective tissue that surrounds individual muscles,  and also divides groups of muscles into fascial compartments.

Visceral or parietal – suspends the organs with their cavities and wraps them in layers of connective tissue membranes.

Much like ligaments , Aponeurosis, and tendons

Fascia is made up of fibrous connective tissue containing closely packed bundles of collagen fibers oriented in a wavy pattern parallel to the direction of the pull. Fascia is consequently flexible and able to resist great unidirectional tension forces until the wavy pattern of fibers have been straightened out by the pulling force.

Ligaments join one bone to another bone, tendons join muscle to bone, and fascia surround muscles or other structures of the body.

Superficial

This type is the lower most layer of the skin in nearly all of the regions of the body, and blends with the reticular dermis layer. It exists on our faces, at the nape of the neck and overlaying the breast bone .  Superficial Fascia is made mostly of fatty connective tissue and loose areolar and is mainly responsible for determining the overall shape of the body.  This type of fascia also surrounds the body’s glands, organs and neurovascular bundles as well as many other places on the body that are otherwise unoccupied.  Some of the purposes of this type of fascia is to store fat, water , and to serve as a passageway for lymph nodes blood vessels, and to serve as a protective padding to cushion and insulate the body. Because of its varies properties it can also stretch and retract with weight gain both during and without pregnancy.

Visceral or Subserous 

serves the primary function of suspending our organs and wrapping them in multiple layers of the connective tissue which is separated by a thin layer of serous membrane. Each organ has specialized names for it’s specific type of Visceral Fascia and is less extensible that Superfical Fascia.

Deep Fascia 

Serves as a layer of very dense and fiberous connective tissue that surrounds individual muscles and also divides groups of muscles into separate ” compartments.”  This type has a high density of elastin Fibre that helps to determine its overall resilience. This type of Fasca is mainly responsible for producing the tension that generates muscular activities throughout the body and to reduce overall frctionfrom these forces.

 

James Joiner

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