In the 18th century, Acute Inflammation was regarded purely as a disease, it was the infamous Anatomist and British Surgeon John Hunter who was the first to realize that acute inflammation was a response to injury that was generally beneficial to the host: “But if inflammation develops, regardless of the cause, still it is an effort whose purpose is to restore the parts to their natural functions.”
Acute Inflammation by definition is the bodies immediate response to harmful stimuli, be it injury or disease. It is the bodies first line of defence against injury. Typically acute inflammation is short-lived and occurs before the immune response becomes established..It aims..to remove the harmful stimuli.
Acute inflammation on the surface of the body is characterised by five primary signs, and they are:
- Redness – Due to increased blood flow to the inflamed area.
- Heat – Due to increased blood flow to the inflamed area also.
- Swelling – Due to an unusual accumulation of fluid
- Pain – Due to a release of the chemical that stimulates the nerve endings.
- Loss of function – Due to a combination of all the above
Please note: Not all of these features will be apparent in acute inflammation of internal organs.