Mnemonics For Common Topics In Physiology

Mnemonics For Common Topics In Physiology

Mnemonics For Common Topics In Physiology Abel  

4 years ago

~22.9 mins read


For many students, physiology is one of the toughest courses. For lecturers, It is one of the toughest courses to explain to students. And this mnemonic would simplify it all for you.

Urination: autonomic control

"When you pee, it's PISs":

Parasympathetic Inhibits Sympathetic.


Adrenal cortex layers and products

"Great Attire And Fast Cars Are Really Sexy Attributes":

Granulosa secretes Aldosterone in response to Angiotensin II. Fasiculata secretes Cortisol in response to ACTH. Reticularis secretes Sex steroids in response to ACTH.


Adrenal gland: functions ACTH:

Adrenergic functions

Catabolism of proteins/ Carbohydrate metabolism

T cell immunomodulation

Hyper/ Hypotension (blood pressure control)


Adrenal cortex layers and products

"Go Find Rex, Make Good Sex":

· Layers: Glomerulosa Fasiculata Reticulata

· Respective products: Mineralcorticoids Glucocorticoids Sex hormones

· Alternatively for layers: GFR (Glomerular Filtration Rate, convenient since adrenal glands are atop kidney).


Carotid sinus vs. carotid body function

carotid SinuS: measures preSSure.

carotid bO2dy measures O2.


Einthoven's Triangle: organization

Corners are at RA (right arm), LA (left arm), LL (left leg).

Number of L's at a corner tell how many + signs are at that corner [eg LL is ++]. Sum of number of L's of any 2 corners tells the name of the lead [eg LL-LA is lead III].


For reference axes, the negative angle hemisphere is on the half of the triangle drawing that has all the negative signs; positive angle hemisphere contains only positive signs.

· See diagram.



Pituitary: anterior hypophysis hormones






Prolactin ignore GH


Hb-oxygen dissociation curve shifts: effect, location

Left shift: causes Loading of O2 in Lungs.

Right shift: causes Release of O2 from Hb.



Diabetes Insipidous: diagnosing subtypes

After a desmopression injection:

Concentrated urine = Cranial.

No effect = Nephrogenic.


Hyperthyroidism: signs and symptoms THYROIDISM:


Heart rate up

Yawning [fatigability]


Oligomenorrhea & amenorrhea

Intolerance to heat




Musle wasting & weight loss


Oxytocin-producing nucleus of hypothalamus

Paraventricular nucleus--> Parturition (childbirth is oxytocin's most important role).


PGI2 vs. TxA2 coagulation function

TxA2 Aggregates platelets.

PGI2 Inhibits aggregation.

· Note: full name of PGI2 is prostaglandin I2 or prostacyclin, full name of TxA2 is thromboxane A2.


Alkalosis vs. acidosis: directions of pH and HCO3 ROME: Respiratory= Opposite:

· pH is high, PCO2 is down (Alkalosis). · pH is low, PCO2 is up (Acidosis).

Metabolic= Equal: · pH is high, HCO3 is high (Alkalosis). · pH is low, HCO3 is low (Acidosis).


Temperature control: cerebral regions

"High Power Air Conditioner":

Heating = Posterior hipothalamo [hypothalamus].

Anterior hipothalamo [hypothalamus] = Cooling.


VO2 normal value is 250 mL/min

"V02" is the numbers, just need to rearrange the order. V is roman numeral for 5, so rearrange to 2V0, or 250 mL/min.


Nervous stimulus: the 4 ways to classify

"A MILD stimulus": Modality Intensity Location Duration


Compliance of lungs factors COMPLIANCE:

Collagen deposition (fibrosis)

Ossification of costal cartilages

Major obesity

Pulmonary venous congestion

Lung size

Increased expanding pressure


No surfactant

Chest wall scarring


· All but L/A/E decrease compliance.


Intrinsic vs.


extrinsic pathway tests

"PeT PiTTbull":

PeT: PT is for extrinsic pathway.

PiTTbull: PTT is for intrinsic pathway.


Heart: -tropic definitions

Lusitropic: loose is relaxed.

Definition: relax heart.

Inotropic: when heart wall contracts, moves inward.

Definition: contract heart. Chronotropic: 'chrono-' means 'time'. Defintion: heart rate (of SA node impulses).

Dromotropic: only one left, it must be conduction speed by default.


Pituitary hormones FLAGTOP:

Follicle stimulating hormone

Lutinizing hormone

Adrenocorticotropin hormone

Growth hormone

Thyroid stimulating hormone



Alternatively: GOAT FLAP with the second 'A' for Anti-diruetic homone/vasopressin

· Note: there is also melanocyte secreting homone and Lipotropin, but they are not well understood.


Heart valves: sequence of flow


TRIcuspid Pulmonary Semilunar

BIcuspid Aortic Semilunar


V/Q gradient in lung

Infinity, a lung and a zero stack nicely.

V/Q is lowest at bottom, highest at top.

· See diagram


Balance organs

Utricle and Saccule keep US balanced.


Adrenal cortex layers and products

"Get your Facts Right, Men are Glued to their Gonads":

Glomerulosa Fasciculata Reticularis Mineralocorticoids Glucocorticoids Gonadocorticoids [androgens]


Heart electrical conduction pathway

"If patient's family are all having Heart attacks, you must SAVe HIS KIN!"

SA node ---> AV node ---> His (bundle of) --> PurKINje fibers


Gut intrinsic innervation: myenteric plexus vs. submucosal plexus function

Myenteric: Motility.

Submucosal: Secretion and blood flow.


Progesterone: actions PROGESTE:

Produce cervical mucous

Relax uterine smooth muscle

Oxycotin sensitivity down

Gonadotropin [FSH, LH] secretions down

Endometrial spiral arteries and secretions up

Sustain pregnancy

Temperature up / Tit development

Excitability of myometrium down


Mechanoreceptor types

"Frustated Muscular Mechanics Rub Her P*ssy":

Free nerve endings


Merkel's disc


Hair end organ

Pacinian corpuscle


Hemoglobin and myoglobin: binding strengths, sites

"ABC" of glycosylated Hb (Hb1c):

· Glucose binds to Amino terminal of Beta Chain.

"HbF binds Forcefully":

· HbF binds oxygen more forcefully than HbA, so Oxy-Hb dissociation curve shifts to left. Stored blood is SOS:

· Stored blood Hb binds to Oxygen Strongly because of decrease in 2,3 BPG. 2,3 BPG binding site is BBC: · BPG binds to Beta Chain of Hb.

Myoglobin binding strength is MOM: · Myoglobin binds Oxygen More strongly than Hb.


Muscle spindle: origin of primary vs. secondary endings

"1 from 1, 2 from 2":

Primary ending is from Group Ia.

Secondary ending from Group II.

· See diagram.




Osteoblast vs. osteoclast

OsteoBlast Builds bone.

OsteoClast Consumes bone.


Pepsin-producing cells

"Chief of Pepsi-Cola":

· Chief cells of stomach produce Pepsin.


Prostaglandins: dilatation abilities

Prospectors keep mineshafts open:

Mineshaft 1: Patent ductus ateriosus.

Mineshaft 2: renal afferent arteriole dilatation.


Adrenal cortex layers and products

"Get My Freakin' Gun Right Away":

Glomerulosa: Mineralcorticoid (aldosterone) Fasiculata: Glucocorticoid (cortisol) Reticularis: Androgens 


MAO isoenzyme form locations

· MAO-A in: Adrenergic peripheral structures Alimentary mucosa [intestine]

· MAO-B in: Brain Blood platelets


Adrenal cortex layers and products

"Get All Fat Chicks Right Away":

· Layers: Glomerulosa Fasciculata Reticularis · Products: Aldosterone Cortisol Androgens


Cochlea: inner vs. outer hair cell function

"Outer cells are Out of the brain. Inner cells are Into the brain":

Outer hair cells are motor efferents to amplify signal. Inner hair cells are sensory afferents that actually pick up the sound.


LH vs FSH: function in male

LH: Leydig cells stimulated to produce testosterone.

FSH: Spermatogenesis stimulated.


Heart valves: closure sequence

"Many Things Are Possible":

Mitral, Tricuspid, Aortic, Pulmonic


Rods vs. cone function

RoD: Dim light.

Cones: Color.


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