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Human Anatomy, First Edition

McKinley & O'Loughlin

Chapter 23 :
Vessels and
Circulation

23-1
Blood Vessels
 An efficient mode of transport for oxygen, nutrients,
and waste products to and from body tissues.
 Heart is the mechanical pump that propels the blood
through the vessels.
 Heart and blood vessels form a closed-loop system.
 Blood is continuously pumped to and from the
tissues.
 Are not rigid and immobile.
 Can pulsate and change shape in accordance with
the body’s needs.

23-2
Blood Vessels
 Naming:
 Often share names with either the body region they traverse
or the bone next to them.
 Some are named for the structure they supply.
 Arteries and veins that travel together sometimes share the
same name.
 Systemic circulation
 consists of the blood vessels that extend to and from the
body tissues.
 Pulmonary circulation
 consists of the vessels that take the blood to the lungs for
gas exchange.
 Work continuously and in tandem with each other.

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Three Main Classes of Blood
Vessels
 Arteries convey blood away from the
heart to the body tissues.
 Arteries branch, or bifurcate, into
smaller and smaller vessels (arterioles)
until they feed into the capillaries,
where gas and nutrient exchange
occurs.
 From the capillaries, veins return blood
to the heart. 23-4
Three Main Classes of Blood
Vessels
 Arteries become progressively smaller as
they divide and get further from the heart.
 Veins become progressively larger as they
merge and get closer to the heart.
 Anastomosis: Site where two or more
vessels merge to supply the same body
region.
 arterial anastomoses: alternate route
 Veins tend to form many more anastomoses than
do arteries.
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Three Main Classes of Blood
Vessels
 End arteries
 Arteries that do not form anastomoses
 Only one route
 E.g.: renal artery, splenic artery
 Functional end arteries
 Have small anastomoses

 E.g.: coronary arteries

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Blood Vessel Tunics
 Tunica Intima, or Tunica Interna
 innermost layer
 composed of:
 an endothelium (simple squamous epithelium)
 subendothelial layer (areolar CT)
 Tunica Media
 middle layer of the vessel wall
 composed of:
 circularly arranged smooth muscle cells
 Sympathetic innervation:
 Increase: vasoconstriction (narrowing of the blood vessel
lumen)
 Decrease: vasodilation (widening of the blood vessel lumen)

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Blood Vessel Tunics
Tunica Externa, or Tunica Adventitia
 outermost layer
 composed of:
 areolar connective tissue that contains elastic and collagen fibers
 helps anchor the vessel to other tissues
 Term adventitia is used to specify outer layer in blood vessels that
are buried in CT
 Vasa vasorum : blood vessels that supply large blood vessels
 In the externa
 Arteries vs Veins:
 Media largest in arteries, externa largest in veins
 Lumen is smallest in arteries
 Artery wall have more elastic and collagen fibers
 Capillaries: only the Interna
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Arteries
 In the systemic circulation, carry oxygenated
blood to the body tissues.
 Pulmonary arteries carry deoxygenated blood
to the lungs.
 Three basic types of arteries:
 elastic arteries, muscular arteries, and arterioles
 as an artery’s diameter decreases
 corresponding decrease in the amount of elastic fibers
 relative increase in the amount of smooth muscle

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Capillaries
 Contain only the tunica intima, but this layer consists
of a basement membrane and endothelium only.
 Allow gas and nutrient exchange between the blood
and the body tissues to occur rapidly.
 Smallest blood vessels, connect arterioles to venules.
 Are called the functional units of the cardiovascular
system.
 A group of capillaries (10–100) functions together
and forms a capillary bed.

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The Three Basic Kinds of
Capillaries
 Continuous capillaries
 the most common type

 Fenestrated capillaries
 Sinusoids, or discontinuous capillaries

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Veins
 Drain capillaries and return the blood to the heart.
 Walls are relatively thin and the vein lumen is larger.
 Systemic veins carry deoxygenated blood to the right
atrium of the heart, while pulmonary veins carry
oxygenated blood to the left atrium of the heart.
 Blood pressure is substantially reduced by the time
blood reaches the veins.
 Hold about 60% of the body’s blood at rest.
 Veins function as blood reservoirs.

23-17
From Venules to Veins
 Venules merge to form veins.
 Venule becomes a “vein” when its diameter is greater than 100
micrometers.
 Blood pressure in veins is too low to overcome the forces of
gravity.
 To prevent blood from pooling in the limbs, most veins contain
one-way numerous valves to prevent blood backflow in the
veins.
 As blood flows superiorly in the limbs, the valves close to
prevent backflow.
 Numerous valves along its length to assist in moving blood back
to the heart.

23-18
From Venules to Veins
Many deep veins pass between skeletal
muscle groups.
 As the skeletal muscles contract, veins

are squeezed to help pump the blood


toward the heart.
 This process is called the skeletal

muscle pump.

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Blood Pressure
 Force/unit area blood places on the
inside wall of a blood vessel.
 Measures in mmHg
 Sphygmomanometer: device to
measure blood pressure.
 Systolic blood pressure
 Diastolic blood pressure
 120/80 mmHg
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Circle of Willis
 An important anastomosis of arteries around the sella turcica.
 Formed from posterior cerebral arteries and posterior
communicating arteries (branches of the posterior cerebral
arteries), internal carotid arteries, anterior cerebral arteries, and
anterior communicating arteries (which connect the two anterior
cerebral arteries).
 Equalizes blood pressure in the brain and can provide collateral
channels should one vessel become blocked.

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Hepatic Portal System
 A venous network that drains the GI tract and shunts the blood
to the liver for processing and absorption of transported
materials.
 Blood exits the liver through hepatic veins that merge with the
inferior vena cava.
 Is needed because the GI tract absorbs digested nutrients, and
these nutrients must be processed and/or stored in the liver.

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Pulmonary Circulation
 Responsible for carrying deoxygenated blood from the right side
of the heart to the lungs, and then returning the newly
oxygenated blood to the left side of the heart.
 Blood is pumped out of the right ventricle into the pulmonary
trunk.
 This vessel bifurcates into a left pulmonary artery and a right
pulmonary artery that go to the lungs.

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Aging and the Cardiovascular
System
 Heart and blood vessels become less resilient.
 Elastic arteries are less able to withstand the forces
from the pulsating blood.
 Systolic blood pressure may increase with age.
 Apt to develop an aneurysm, whereby part of the
arterial wall thins and balloons out.
 Wall is more prone to rupture, which can cause
massive bleeding and death.
 Incidence and severity of atherosclerosis increases.

23-39
Fetal Circulation
 Oxygenated blood from the placenta enters through the
umbilical vein.
 Blood is shunted away from the liver and directly toward the
inferior vena cava through the ductus venosus.
 Oxygenated blood in the ductus venosus mixes with
deoxygenated blood in the inferior vena cava.
 Blood empties into the right atrium.
 Most of the blood is shunted to the left atrium via the foramen
ovale.
 Blood flows into the left ventricle and out the aorta.
 A small amount of blood enters the right ventricle and
pulmonary trunk, but much of this blood is shunted to the aorta
through ductus arteriosus.
 Blood travels to the rest of the body, and the deoxygenated
blood returns to the placenta through umbilical arteries.
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