How blood flows through the body

Monday, November 12, 2018

How does your blood flow throughout your body?

The circulatory system is the transportation system of the body and is responsible for the flow of blood in the body. The major structures that make this possible are the heart, blood vessels, and blood.
The heart pumps blood in order to move nutrients, oxygen, carbon dioxide, disease-fighting white blood cells, and hormones to and from the cells in the body.

human heart

The circulatory system has two main types of circulation.

Pulmonary Circulation
Systemic Circulation

Pulmonary circulation is from the heart to the lungs where your blood picks up oxygen and returns back to the heart.

Systemic circulation is from the heart to the entire body and back to the heart

Your heart has four chambers that are used to pump blood throughout your body.

heart circulatory system

Two Atria - which are the upper chambers and where blood enters the heart.
Two ventricles - these are the lower chambers and is where blood exits the heart.
The left and right side of the heart is divided by the septum

Blood Vessels carry blood throughout the body.

blood vessels

carry blood away from the heart and veins carry blood towards the heart.

Capillaries, which are the smallest blood vessels in the body create a network of vessels connecting veins and arteries.

In summary, the heart pumps blood to the body through the arteries and returns blood to the body through the veins

You have around 1.5 gallons of blood in your body.
It is composed of several different types of cells.
The first type of blood cell is the red blood cell. Red blood cells help carry oxygen.

The second type of blood cell is known as the white blood cell and helps fight pathogens.

The third type of cells are platelets which create blood clots.
These blood cells are found in a liquid called plasma which consists of water along with electrolytes and some proteins and hormones.

The flow of blood through the heart

heart anatomy

Blood enters on the right side of the heart from the superior and inferior vena cava. This blood is oxygen-poor because the blood has traveled around the body and the oxygen in the blood has been exchanged for carbon dioxide.

The blood enters the right atria and travels through the tricuspid valve and into the right ventricle.
From this chamber, this oxygen-poor blood travels up the pulmonary artery and into the lungs. 
Oxygen is exchanged for carbon dioxide and it travels back to the heart full of oxygen.

The blood travels into the left atria and then goes through the mitral valve into the left ventricle.
From the left ventricle, it travels through the aortic valve and out of the aorta and into the entire body.

In summary, the job of the circulatory system is to circulate blood to and from cells in the body in order to transport nutrients and oxygen and remove carbon dioxide and waste.

Additional resources

The flow of blood video

Pathway of blood Quizlet

15 Heart Facts

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