Cardiovascular Anatomy Of The Heart
The cardiovascular system, also known as the circulatory system, consists of the heart, blood, and blood vessels (Mertz, 2004). The cardiovascular system moves oxygenated blood and nutrients through to and removes carbon dioxide and wastes out of the body’s cells. (Miracle of the Human Body, 2010) I will provide an overview how a healthy cardiovascular system does this by first discussing the anatomy of it, in a healthy state, and then the physiology of it, also in a healthy state, this will include how the pulmonary and systemic circuits work. Lastly, I will discuss what happens when the heart is in a diseased state and how it could lead to a heart attack. I will first start with the anatomy of blood.
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The heart is roughly the size of a fist, composed of a three layered wall, and separated into four chambers. The layers include the superficial epicardium, the middle myocardium, and the deepest layer called the endocardium. The four chambers consists of the right atrium, right ventricle, left atrium and left ventricle. The right and left atriums are separated by the interatrial septum and the interventricular septum divides the right and left ventricles. There are atrial-ventricular junctions that differentiate between the atriums and ventricles which contains atrioventricular valves. These valves, known as the tricuspid valve on the right side and mitral valve on the left side, are present to prevent backflow from the ventricles into the atrium. Three veins are connected to the right atrium – the superior vena cava, the inferior vena cava, and the coronary sinus; the pulmonary trunk stems from the right ventricle; the left atrium has four pulmonary veins the join it; and connected to the left ventricle is the aorta. (Farley, McLafferty, & Hendry,