Human Circulatory System
The human circulatory system is termed the cardiovascular system, from the Greek word kardia, meaning heart, and the Latin vasculum, meaning small vessel. The basic components of the cardiovascular system are the heart, the blood vessels, and the blood. The work done by the cardiovascular system is astounding. Each year, the heart pumps more than 1,848 gal (7,000 l) of blood through a closed system of about 62,100 mi (100,000 km) of blood vessels. This is more than twice the distance around the equator of the earth. As blood circulates around the body, it picks up oxygen from the lungs, nutrients from the small intestine, and hormones from the endocrine glands, and delivers these to the cells. Blood then picks up carbon dioxide and cellular wastes from cells and delivers these to the lungs and kidneys, where they are excreted. Substances pass out of blood vessels to the cells through the interstitial or tissue fluid which surrounds cells.
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