The term Cardiac Muscle is
used inter-changeably with the term "Heart Muscle".
This is the specialized
muscle that forms the walls of the heart.
The Structure of Cardiac Muscle:
Cardiac muscle has many similarities with skeletal
muscle, but also has some special features. Studies using electron microscopes
(more powerful than the more common, and simpler, optical
show that cardiac muscle consists of a network of
branching elongated cells whose
junctions with other cells are marked by irregular transverse bands
called intercalated discs that are located
at the positions of the end-to-end attachments of the cells. Cardiac
cells are joined to each other ionically by gap junctions.
muscle is striated but,
unlike skeletal skeletal (striated), it is made up of a continuous,
morphologically distinct network of branching
and anastomosing cells.
Cardiac muscle (in common with skeletal
muscle), has actin and myosin microfilaments
organized into sarcomeres.
life, cardiac muscle contracts about 70 times per
pumping about 5 litres of blood each minute.
See also our definitions
of the heart.
Other types of muscle tissue:
There are three main types of muscle tissue.
Muscle - muscles that move bones (under concious control).
Muscle - surrounding organs and other body structures (nor
under concious control).
Muscle - the specialised muscle found only in the heart.