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Pharynx and Larynx Difference

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Last updated date: 19th Apr 2024
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Role of Pharynx and Larynx: Explaining Respiratory and Digestive System

In order to understand the difference between Pharynx and Larynx, we must first be aware of the respiratory and digestive systems. Then we will explain pharynx and larynx.


Meaning of Respiratory System

A network of tissues and organs called the respiratory system aids in breathing. Your blood vessels, lungs, and airways are all a part of it. As a component of the respiratory system, your lungs' muscles are also involved in breathing. These components function as a unit to transport oxygen throughout the body and eliminate waste gases like carbon dioxide.


Meaning of Digestive System

The digestive system in humans is utilized to carry out the digesting process. The digestive tract, or the group of structures and organs through which food and liquids pass as they are transformed into forms that may be absorbed into circulation, makes up the majority of the human digestive system. The system also includes the organs that supply the fluids required for digestion as well as the structures via which wastes are eliminated.


Both the larynx and pharynx play a critical role in the process of breathing and digestion and we will discuss the characteristics of pharynx and larynx in detail.

What is Pharynx and Larynx?

Pharynx: The pharynx, sometimes known as the throat, is a muscular, funnel-shaped conduit inside the body. It joins the mouth and nose to the esophagus, which leads to the stomach, and the larynx, which leads to the trachea and finally the lungs. The center of the neck is where the pharynx is located. It measures around 4.5 inches long and begins at the base of the skull.


Functions of the Pharynx

The pharynx performs various crucial functions. It:


  • Provides the respiratory system with air.

  • Transports fluids and food to the digestive system.

  • Prevents food from being inhaled by forcing it into the esophagus.

  • Drains fluid from the ears and balances pressure inside them.


Larynx: The larynx is a component of the respiratory system. It is a hollow tube that allows air to go from your neck, or pharynx, down your trachea, and then to your lungs. It is sometimes referred to as the voice box since it houses your vocal cords and is necessary for speaking. The larynx is located in the center of your neck at the level of Adam's apple. The neck's fourth to sixth cervical vertebrae is where one can find it.


Functions of Larynx

Your body's larynx serves three key purposes:

  • Breathing.

  • making vocal vibrations.

  • preventing food and other debris from entering your lungs, trachea, and other respiratory organs.


Pharynx and Larynx Difference 

S.No

Category

Pharynx

Larynx

1

Definition

The throat, or pharynx, is the portion that is posterior to the larynx, nasal, and oral cavities

The vocal cords are housed in the larynx, a hollow muscular structure that serves as the airway to the lungs

2

Structure

Cavity with membrane lining

Hollow tube-like structure

3

Location

Back of the nose

The C3-6 spinal disc

4

Organ

Pharynx is not an organ   

Larynx is an organ

5

Vocal Cords

No vocal cords are present

Vocal cords are present

6

System

Part of the digestive system

Not a part of the digestive system


Summary

The pharynx and the larynx are two distinct throat structures with distinct purposes. The pharynx is a fibromuscular tube that connects the digestive system to the breathing system. It connects the nose, mouth, and esophagus to the larynx and stomach, and it lets food and air flow through. The entrance to the lower respiratory passages is protected by the cartilaginous larynx. The vocal cords, which create sound, are also situated there. In this way, the article has aimed to explain pharynx and larynx.

FAQs on Pharynx and Larynx Difference

1. What is the anatomy of the Pharynx?

The following are parts of the pharynx anatomy:


  • The nasal cavities (nose) are connected to the top of the throat by the nasopharynx, which allows air to travel through.

  • The oropharynx is the area in the center of the throat that links to the oral cavity (mouth). It enables the passage of food, drink, and air.

  • Laryngopharynx (or hypopharynx): The larynx, or voice box, is located close to the bottom of the throat. It controls the flow of food and liquid into the esophagus as well as the passage of air to the lungs.

2. What is the anatomy of the Larynx?

The larynx has the following structures:


  • The epiglottis is the skin flap that protects the larynx's aperture. It prevents debris, including food, from entering your respiratory system.

  • False voice cords: Also known as vestibular folds, false vocal cords shut your larynx as you swallow to prevent food from entering your lungs and trachea.

  • Thyroid cartilage: The Adam's apple is the term used to describe this piece of cartilage on the front of your larynx.

  • Your vocal cords, also known as vocal folds, vibrate and open and close as air travels through them to produce sounds and speech.

3. What is Pharynx and Larynx?

The pharynx is a tubular and muscular organ that is a component of both the respiratory and digestive systems in humans. It is a tube that connects the mouth to the esophagus and the nostrils to the larynx, and it is situated in the neck. The larynx is a tubular, cartilaginous organ that is a component of the respiratory system of humans. The trachea, which descends from the fourth thoracic vertebra and conducts air to the lungs, is the tube that accepts air from the throat and directs it there.