Functions of arteries, veins and capillaries.

functions are arteries, veins and capillaries

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Arteries

  • ARTERIES

STRUCTURE:

Relatively thick wall

Smooth muscle

Elastic fibres

Lined with smooth layer of endothelial cells and narrow lumen

FUNCTIONAL SIGNIFICANCE:

  • Withstannds high blood pressure
  • Alters diameter of lumen to vary blood flow
  • Allow walls to stretch when blood is pumped into the artery and then recoil, smoothing blood flow
  • Low friction
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Capillaries

CAPILLARIES

STRUCTURE

Very thin wall (just one cell thick)

FUNCTIONAL SIGNIFICANCE

  • Allows rapid exchange between blood and tissues
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Veins

VEINS

STRUCTURE

Relatively thin wall

Very little smooth muscle/elastic fibres

Wide lumen

Valves- to prevent back flow

FUNCTIONAL SIGNIFICANCE

  • Blood under low pressure
  • No pulse of blood so no stretching and recoiling
  • Large volume acts as blood reservoir
  • Stop backflow (valves)

 

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