What is the lymphatic system?
A collection of cells and biochemicals that travel in lymphatic vessels, and the organs and glands that produce them.
What is the lymphatic system composed of?
The lymphatic system consists of lymph, lymph vessels, lymph nodes, and four organs. The organs are the tonsils, the spleen, the thymus gland, and Peyer’s patches.
What are the functions of the lymphatic system?
The primary function of this system is to drain excess tissue fluid and return it to the bloodstream. Other functions are to transport fats from the digestive tract to the blood, to produce lymphocytes and to develop immunities.
What is the function of the special lymphatic capillaries called lacteals?
They absorb digested fats and transport them to the venous circulation when the lymph rejoins the blood at the right and left subclavian veins.
Why must excess interstitial fluid be reabsorbed?
To prevent swelling and edema
What are the names given to the small, medium, and large lymph vessels?
- Small: lymphatic capillaries
- Medium: lymphatic vessels
- Large: lymphatic trunks
What are the names of the two collecting ducts?
- Thoracic duct
- Right lymphatic duct
What are the differences between the thoracic and right lymphatic ducts?
- The thoracic duct is longer and larger
- The thoracic duct collects lymph from the lower limbs and abdominal region, left upper limb, left side of thorax, head, and neck.
- The right lymphatic duct collects lymph from the right side of head and neck, right upper limb, and right side of thorax.
- The thoracic duct drains into the left subclavian vein, whereas the right lymphatic duct drains into the right subclavian vein.
What pathway does lymph take?