Fantastic Voyage

Topics: Immune system, Blood, Inferior vena cava Pages: 5 (1359 words) Published: May 21, 2013
Fantastic Voyage

Lyndsay Powell

HS 130 - 02

Unit #4 Assignment

Kaplan University

April 16, 2013

Fantastic Voyage

“Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen. My name is Lyndsay Powell and I am thankful that you have decided to come on this adventure with me. I hope you learn some interesting information from me today. And remember, if you have any questions, feel free to stop me at anytime. Any questions so far? No? Well, let’s take off!

“Ladies and gentlemen, we have just entered the blood stream through the right femoral vein of a healthy, active, twenty-three year old female. For those of you who are unsure where the right femoral vein is, I’ll tell you. The right femoral vein is found in the upper right thigh of the leg. Ok, now that we all know where we are, let’s begin our fantastic voyage.

“Blood flows from the right femoral vein up to the heart. It travels through several different veins to get there, and we will cover those as we get to them. But before we get to that, let me give you a little back story on the blood system. There are about 4.5 to 5 million red blood cells per every cubic millimeter of blood and about 5,000 to 10,000 white blood cells per every cubic millimeter of blood (Thibodeau & Patton, 2006). See that there? That is a red blood cell. As you can see, it is disk-shaped. It has no nuclei and its function is to transport oxygen and carbon dioxide to and from different parts of the body (Thibodeau & Patton, 2006).”

“Incoming alert! Incoming alert!” says the intercom.

“Hold on just a second ladies and gentlemen. It seems that there is a problem.”

After listening to the command center, Lyndsay comes back to tell her passengers: “Well ladies and gentlemen, it seems as if our patient here has a bacterial pneumonia in the lower lobe of her right lung. Would you guys like to see how our immune system fights off this infection? You would? Great! Let’s get on up to the lung so we can see what exactly is going on.

“Since we are in a hurry, I am putting this baby in full gear and we are going to zoom all the way to the lung pretty fast. Right now we are meeting up with the great saphenous vein. When the right femoral vein and the great saphenous vein collide with one another, they form the external iliac vein. The external iliac vein combines with the internal iliac vein to make the common iliac vein. The left and right common iliac veins come together to form the inferior vena cava (Thibodeau & Patton, 2006). The inferior vena cava runs from the pelvis all the way to the heart and brings deoxygenized blood from the lower part of the body, including the legs and abdomen, to the heart to be oxygenized (Knights, 2013). If you look to your right, you can see your right kidney and on your left, you can see your left kidney and your stomach. Your kidneys are bean-shaped organs, about the size of your fist, that process nearly 200 quarts of blood a day and get rid of about two quarts of waste products and extra water that your body does not need (National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse (NKUDIC), 2012).

“And we are now in the right atrium of the heart. The right atrium receives blood from the inferior vena cava, which is how we got here, and from the superior vena cava. Now that we have reached the right atrium, hold on tight, because we are about to go fast! We quickly pass to the right ventricle through the tricuspid valve, then through the pulmonic valve to the pulmonary artery, and we finally make it to the right lung for oxygenation. And look here, ladies and gentlemen, we have made it to the right lung. Wasn’t that fun?!

“Now that we are in the alveoli, we can see where the bacterial pneumonia is at. Do you see those white blood cells there? They are working hard to attack and destroy the bacteria. Once the body gets rid of the bacteria, it develops antibodies that help...
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