A huge part of our everyday life
What is the Circulatory System?
A few functions of the circulatory system include:
- Carrying digested food nutrients from the small intestine to the areas of the body which need it.
- Carrying oxygen from the lungs to the body.
- Aiding in the disposal of all wastes from the body.
- Distribution of heat.
- Fighting off diseases with white blood cells to destroy infections.
What keeps the Circulatory System Running?
- The heart
- Blood Vessels
The heart is a cardiac muscle with four open spaces to allow blood to flow in and out of it. The four openings in the heart are:
- The right atrium
- The right ventricle
- The left atrium
- The right ventricle
The left side and the right side of the heart are separated by the septum.
Blood is be made of various types of blood cells which are created in the bone marrow (soft tissue located within our bones).
The three different types of blood cells:
- Red blood cells (about 5,000,000 in one drop of blood): They retrieve oxygen from the lungs and deliver it to the other cells in our body. Then they collect the waste carbon dioxide the cells produce and take it back to the lungs for the body to exhale and release it back into the air.
- White blood cells (about 10,000 in one drop of blood): Destroys germs when they enter the body. When your body gets an infection more white blood cells are produced to help defeat the infection. When a doctor prescribes an antibiotic they help our white blood cells to defeat larger infections.
- Platelets (about 250,000,000 in one drop of blood): Help stop bleeding when we have a broken blood vessel and blood leaks out. The platelets begin to group up and stick together to cover up holes in damaged blood vessels. When the platelet plug completely covers a damaged hole the wound stops bleeding and we call the plug scabs.
Plasma: This is the liquid part of the blood that we see and it is made in the liver. It makes up about half of our blood and it carries the blood cells through our body.
There are three types of blood vessels:
- Arteries: Carry oxygen rich blood away from the heart.
- Capillaries: Are blood vessels as thin as hair and connect arteries to veins. Nutrients, oxygen and waste products pass through capillary walls to enter or exit our blood.
- Veins: Carry oxygenated our blood back towards our heart.
The heart pumps your blood through a continuous cycle that follows this order:
- Deoxygenated blood through superior and inferior cava
- Right atrium
- Tricuspid valve
- Right ventricle
- Semilunar valve
- Pulmonary artery
- Lungs (makes blood oxygenated)
- Pulmonary veins
- Left atrium
- Mitral valve
- Left ventricle
- To rest of body- liver, stomach, intestines, kidneys, lower body and legs Back to superior and inferior cava
The top number, which is also the higher of the two numbers, measures the pressure in the arteries when the heart beats (when the heart muscle contracts).
The bottom number, which is also the lower of the two numbers, measures the pressure in the arteries between heartbeats (when the heart muscle is resting between beats and refilling with blood).
Narrowed, blocked or stiffened blood vessels that prevent parts of your body from receiving enough blood.
shortness of breath
pain, numbness, weakness or coldness in legs or arms
pain in neck, jaw, throat, upper abdomen or back
Coronary Artery Disease
Fatty material builds up in the artery walls gradually over time and causes blockage.
- Shortness of breath
- Palpitations (irregular heart beats, skipped beats, or a "flip-flop" feeling in your chest)
- A faster heartbeat
- Weakness or dizziness
Heart rhythm problems such as an abnormal heartbeat where the heart may beat too quickly, too slowly or irregularly.
fluttering in chest
chest pain or discomfort
shortness of breath
fainting or near fainting
"How Is Coronary Heart Disease Diagnosed?" - NHLBI, NIH. Web. 19 Nov. 2015. <http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/cad/diagnosis>.
"Understanding Blood Pressure Readings." - American Heart Association. 19 Nov. 2015
"Coronary Artery Disease: Causes, Symptoms, Treatments." WebMD. WebMD. Web. 19 Nov. 2015. <http://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/guide/heart-disease-coronary-artery-disease>.
"Atherosclerosis: Causes, Symptoms, Tests, and Treatment - WebMD." WebMD. WebMD. Web. 19 Nov. 2015. <http://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/what-is-atherosclerosis>.
"Coronary Heart Disease." - Heart Health. Web. 19 Nov. 2015. <https://www.bhf.org.uk/heart-health/conditions/coronary-heart-disease>.
"Coronary Heart Disease - Treatment ." Coronary Heart Disease. Web. 19 Nov. 2015. <http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Coronary-heart-disease/Pages/treatment.aspx>.
"Heart Disease." Symptoms. Web. 19 Nov. 2015. <http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/heart-disease/basics/symptoms/con-20034056>.
"Circulatory System." Circulatory System. Web. 19 Nov. 2015. <http://hes.ucfsd.org/gclaypo/circulatorysys.html>.
"THE CIRCULATORY SYSTEM." THE CIRCULATORY SYSTEM. Web. 19 Nov. 2015. <http://leavingbio.net/circulatory system/circulatory system.htm>.
"10 Facts about the Heart and Circulatory System." 10 Facts about the Heart and Circulatory System. Web. 19 Nov. 2015. <http://theredish.com/img/10 facts about the heart and circulatory system>.
BBC News. BBC. Web. 19 Nov. 2015. <http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/historic_figures/harvey_william.shtml>.
Castro, By. "11 Surprising Facts About the Circulatory System." LiveScience. TechMedia Network, 25 Sept. 2013. Web. 19 Nov. 2015. <http://www.livescience.com/39925-circulatory-system-facts-surprising.html>.