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Blood Vessels

tubelike structures that carry blood throughout the body


blood vessels that carry blood away from the heart


blood vessels that carry blood back to the heart

Vessel Lumen

Inner space of the vessel

Tunica Intima

innermost layer; squamous epithelium surrounded by connective tissue with elastic fibers

Tunica Media

middle layer of artery; made up of smooth muscle fibers and thick layer of elastic connective tissue

Tunica Externa

outermost tunic, composed of fibrous connective tissue

Elastic Arteries

largest type of artery; contains many elastic fibers that allow it to stretch in response to each pulse; close to the heart.

Conducting arteries

also known as elastic arteries. Leading the blood to all parts of the body.

Muscular arteries

arteries that deliver blood; active in vasoconstriction; thick tunica media. Distribute to all parrts of the body.

Arterioles vessels

resistance vessels. These vessels control your blood pressure.

Lymphatic System

This system's funtions are (1) to transport tissue fluid to the blood vessels, and (2) to protect the body by removing foreign material such as bacteria from the lymphatic stream and by serving as a cite for lymphocytes "policing of body fluids and lymphocyte multiplication. It is a one-way system that carries lymph only towards the heart.

Terminal arteriole

Last vessel before capillaries. They lead up to capillary bed.

Precapillary Sphincter

a ring of muscle that contracts to close an opening. Exchange vessels

Postcapillary Venule

smallest venule---Form part of microcirculatory exchange unit with capillaries

Small veins

smooth muscle cells from a continuous layer. addition of tunica adventiatia made of collagenous connective tissue

Continuous Capillaries

capillaries found in skin and muscles; uninterupted lining; held with tight junctions

Fenestrated capillaries

secretions enter the circulation through these that contain open spaces between their epithelial cells. Pores, holes


Are like fenestrated capillaries but they have gaps between adjacent endothelial cells and thin or absent basal lamina.

Sinusoidal capillaries

leaky capillaries; found only in the liver, bone marrow, lymphoid tissues and some endocrine glands; allow large molecules to pass between blood and surrounding tissues

Capillary Beds

Interweaving network that capillaries form


form by venules, blood vessels that carry blood back to the heart


small vessels that gather blood from the capillaries into the veins

True Capillaries

exchange vessels; 10-100 per capillary bed

Vascular Anastomoses

Interconnections of blood vessels

Arterial Anastomoses

When two arteries merge and provide alternative routes of blood supply to a tissue:

Collateral Channels

what are vascular anastomoses especially with veins that provide alternative pathways for blood to reach a given body region

Arteriovenous Anastomoses

allow arteries to have direct connections w/ veins and bypass the capillary bed when needed


hardening of the arteries


condition in which fatty deposits called plaque build up on the inner walls of the arteries

Blood Flow

volume of blood that flows through any tissue in a given period of time

Blood Pressure

the pressure of the circulating blood against the walls of the blood vessels

Blood Viscosity

resistance to flow; thickness/stickiness of blood; fairly constant

Total Blood Vessel Length

Resistance directly proportional to length of vessel

Blood Vessel Diameter

most important source of resistance

Systolic Pressure

the blood pressure (as measured by a sphygmomanometer) during the contraction of the left ventricle of the heart

Diastolic Pressure

the blood pressure (as measured by a sphygmomanometer) after the contraction of the heart while the chambers of the heart refill with blood

Pulse Pressure

difference between systolic and diastolic pressure

Mean Arterial Pressure

Diastolic + 1/3 pulse pressure

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