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Lymphatic System

ENSEAL – Enables surgeons to achieve stronger sealing and better access to lymphatic vessels. ENSEAL – Enables surgeons to achieve stronger sealing and better access to lymphatic vessels. It is very difficult to deal with lymphatic ducts due to their narrow size (thin–walled). This device designed to allow surgeons to take a perpendicular approach to seal vessels up to 7mm in diameter and lymphatics through a 5mm port. ENSEAL Articulating will help surgeons maneuver around corners and behind structures in the body, and provide better access to tissue in deep or tight spaces for greater control of the angle of approach to vessels. Let’s explore more about the anatomy and functions of human lymphatics.

Learning Objectives

After completing the topic, the student will be able to:

  • Analyze the organization and processes of human lymphatic system.
  • Define “lymph” and explore the main functions of lymphatic system.
  • List the components of lymphatic system and explore the functions of each.
  • Examine how spleen helps the body to fight against infection.
  • Describe the key roles of thymus and bone marrow in lymphatic system.
  • Delineate the role of tonsils and adenoids in the lymphatic system.
  • List some of the disorders associated with lymphatic system.
 Human Lymphatic system Human Lymphatic system Main functions of lymphatic system is to collect and return interstitial fluid, including plasma protein to the blood, and thus help maintain fluid balance, to defend the body against disease by producing lymphocytes, to absorb lipids from the intestine and transport them to the blood.
Lymphatic System

The lymphatic system is a part of the circulatory system, comprising a network of conduits called lymphatic vessels that carry a clear fluid called lymph, unidirectionally towards the heart. The lymphatic system consists of organs, ducts, and nodes. It transports a watery clear fluid called lymph. This fluid distributes immune cells and other factors throughout the body.

It also interacts with the blood circulatory system to drain fluid from cells and tissues. The lymphatic system contains immune cells called lymphocytes, which protect the body against antigens (viruses, bacteria, etc.,) that invade the body.

Functions of lymphatic system include

  • The lymphatic system aids the immune system in removing and destroying waste, debris, dead blood cells, pathogens, toxins, and cancer cells.
  • The lymphatic system absorbs fats and fat‐soluble vitamins from the digestive system and delivers these nutrients to the cells of the body where they are used by the cells.
  • The lymphatic system also removes excess fluid, and waste products from the interstitial spaces between the cells.

Leukocytes are the part of lymphatic system which helps in body defense mechanisms  Leukocytes are the part of lymphatic system which helps in body defense mechanisms Leukocytes are present in the lymphatic system and the blood, traveling to infected tissues and/or organs to attack the cause of the infection.
External drainage system

Closely connected with the blood and circulatory system, the lymphatic system is an extensive drainage system that returns water and proteins from various tissues back to the bloodstream. Some scientists consider this system to be part of the blood and circulatory system because lymph comes from blood and returns to blood, and because its vessels are very similar to the veins and capillaries of the blood system. Throughout the body, wherever there are blood vessels, there are lymph vessels, and the two systems work together.

As blood circulates under pressure, its fluid component (plasma) seeps through the thin wall of the capillaries into the surrounding tissue. Much of this fluid, called interstitial fluid, returns to the blood through the capillary membranes. The remainder of the interstitial fluid, now called lymph, flows from the spaces in connective tissue into a network of tiny open lymphatic capillaries and then into a series of progressively larger collecting vessels called lymphatic vessels.

The largest lymphatic vessel, the thoracic duct, empties into the left sub-clavian vein near the heart. In this way, the lymphatic system captures fluid lost from the blood and returns it to the blood, thus ensuring steady‐state levels of fluid within the circulatory system. The heart does not pump the lymph through the lymphatic system; instead the flow of lymph is achieved as the lymph vessels are squeezed by movements of the body’s muscles. A series of one‐way valves along the lymphatic vessels ensures that lymph flows only in one direction.

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