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Definition

The cardiovascular system, also known as the circulatory system, is an organ system that encompasses the heart, blood and blood vessels of the body. The cardiovascular system carries blood, oxygen, and nutrients to organs and tissues of the body, and carries waste and carbon dioxide from these tissues for removal from the body.

History
The most basic principles of the CVS took thousands of years to uncover. An Egyptian papyrus dating back to 1500BC correctly correlated the character and frequency of the pulse with the patient s health status. Hippocrates (460-355BC) and his pupils also drew accurate conclusions regarding the nature of blood flow However, the concept of circularity was confirmed two millennia later by William Harvey Aristotle began the disruption of scientific understanding of the heart and its system Erasistratus ( 310-240BC) first described the heart s valves

History
The next advancement in CVS came from Galen ( AD 130200) found that arteries contained blood, instead of air. His views went largely unquestioned for a staggering 1500 years Ibn An-Nafis (1210-88) made the first reference to the pulmonary circulation Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519) drew the heart with four chambers and described the mechanism by which the aortic valve closed In 1574, Fabricius of Aquapendente (1537-1619), published De Venarum Osteolis which examined the valves of veins.

History
It was William Harvey (1578-1657) who finally explained that blood pumps with ventricular contraction through the lungs back to the heart and then through the body where it passes through pores in the flesh and returns from the periphery through veins increasing in size as they approach the heart. He specified that blood moves. Finally, Marcello Malpighi (1628-1694), Jacob van Swammerdam (1637-1680), and Anthony van Leeuwenhoek (1632-1723) used the microscope to explain the shape of the red blood cell and the capillary networks that form the connection between arterioles and venules

Introduction
Cvs comprises of three main components The heart blood vessels blood The system has two major divisions 1. pulmonary circuit 2. systematic circuit

Pulmonary circuit
Right side of heart serves the pulmonary circuit. It carries blood to the lungs for gas exchange and returns it to heart. Recives the blood that has circulated through the body, unloaded it oxygen and nutrients, and picked up a load of carbon dioxide and other wastes It pumps blood into the pulmonary trunk which divides into right and left pulmonary areteries. These transport blood to the air sacs (alveoli) of the lungs, where CO2 is unloaded and O2 is picked up. The oxygen-rich blood then flows to the left side of the heart.

Systematic circuit
The left side serves the systematic circuit. Blood leaves it by the aorta. The aortic arch gives off arteries that supply the head, neck, and upper limbs The aorta then travels through thoracic and abdominal cavities and issues smaller arteries to the other organs. After circulating through the body, the nowdeoxygenated systematic blood returns to the right side of the heart mainly by way of two large veins, the superior vena cava and inferior vena cava. The major arteries and veins entering and leaving the heart are called the great vessels (great arteries and veins)

Position and shape of heart


The heart is located in the thoracic cavity in the mediastinum, between the lungs and deep to the sternum. From its superior to inferior midpoints, it is tilted towards the left about two-thirds of the heart lies to the left of the median plane. The broad superior portion of the heart called the base is the point of attachment for the great vessels. The inferior end tapers to a blunt point, the apex of the heart.

Size of the Heart


The adult heart is about 9cm (3.5 inches) wide at the base 13cm (5inches) from the base to apex 6cm (2.5inches) from anterior to posterior at its thickest point It is roughly the size of one s fist. It weighs about 300g (10 oz)

The Pericardium
The heart is enclosed in a double walled sac called the pericardium. The outer wall called parietal pericardium has tough fibrous layer and deep thin serous layer The serous layer turns inward and forms the visceral pericardium (epicardium) covering the heart surface. Between the parietal and visceral membranes is a space called pericardial cavity. It contains 5 to 30 mL of percardial fluid.

The Pericardium
The fluid lubricates the membranes and allows the heart to beat almost without froction. Pericardium also isolates the heart from other thoracic organs, allows the heart to expand yet resists excessive expansion.

The Heart Wall


Consists of 3 layers 1. Epicardium covering its external surface 2. Thick muscular myocardium in middle 3. Endocardium lining the interior of chambers Epicardium: Is a serous membrane on heart surface.the largest branches of coronory blood vessels travel through the epicardium

The Heart Wall


Endocardium: Lines the interior of the heart chamber. It covers the wall surfaces and is continuous with epithelium of the blood vessels Myocardium: It is thickest by far. Its thickness varies greatly from one heart chamber to another and is proportional to the workload on the individual chambers.

The Heart Wall


The heart also has a meshwork of collagenous and elastic fibres that make up fibrous skeleton. Functions: 1. Provides structural support for heart 2. Anchors the myocytes 3. Serves as electrical insulation between atria and ventricles 4. The elastic recoil of skeleton may aid in refilling the heart with blood after each beat.

The Chambers
The heart has 4 chambers. The two at superior pole (base) of heart are the right and left atria. The two inferior heart chambers the right and left ventricles are the pumps that eject blood into the arteries and keep it flowing around the body.

The Chambers
On the surface the boundaries of four chambers are marked by 3 sulci (grooves). The sulci are occupied largely by fat and coronary blood vessels. The coronory (artrioventricular) sulcus encircles the heart near the base and seperates the atria above from ventricles below. The other two sulci extend down the heart one on the front of heart called anterior interventricular sulcus and one on back called posterior interventricular sulcus.

The Chambers
The atria are separated from each other by a wall called interatrial septum. The right ventricle pumps blood only to the lungs and back so its wall is only moderately muscular. The wall of the left ventricle is two to four times as thick because it bears the greatest workload of all 4 chambers, pumping blood through the entire body.

The Valves
To pump blood effectively the heart needs valves. There is a wall between each atrium and its ventricle and another at the exit from each ventricle into its great artery. Each valve consists of 2 or 3 fibrous flaps of tissue called cusps or leaflets covered with endothilium The artrioventricular valves regulate the openings between atria and ventricles. The right AV (tricuspid) valve has 3 cusps and left AV (bicuspid) valve has 2. The left AV valve is known as mitral valve

Blood Flow Through The Chambers


Blood in the right and left chambers of the heart is kept entirely separate. Blood travels from the right atrium through the body and back to the starting point Blood returns to the heart through two large veins the superior vena cava and the inferior vena cava. Both of these veins enter the right atrium approaching from above and below the heart

Blood Flow Through The Chambers


Blood in the right atrium flows through the right AV valve into the right ventricle When the right ventricle contracts the AV valve closes and blood is forced through the pulmonary valve into the pulmonary trunk This artery ascends from the front of the heart and branches into the right and left pulmonary arteries which lead to respective lungs In the lungs this blood unloads it CO2 and picks up a load of O2

Blood Flow Through The Chambers


The oxygen enriched blood returns by the way of several veins which converge to form four pulmonary veins by the time they reach the heart These 4 empty into the left atrium. Blood flows from there past the left AV valve into the left ventricle. The left ventricle contracts at the same time as the right and expels this blood through the aortic valve into the ascending aorta

Blood Flow Through The Chambers


Blood in the aorta flows to every organ in the body, unloading some of its O2, picking up CO2 from the tissues and returning to the heart via venae cavae. The blood vessels of the heart wall constitute the coronary circulation. At rest the coronary blood vessels supply the myocardium with about 250 mL of blood per minute. Approx. 5% of the circulating blood goes to meet the metabolic needs of heart, even though the heart is only 0.5% of the body s weight.