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Lymphatic System


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The information included here are just basic information.

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Lymphatic System

  2. 2. WHAT IS LYMPHATIC SYSTEM? It is a system of thin tubes that runs throughout the body. It is like the blood circulation – the tubes (vessels) branch through all the parts of the body like the arteries and veins that carry blood.
  3. 3. WHAT IS LYMPH?  Comes from the Latin word “lympha”, meaning “clear water”  It is a clear fluid that circulates around the body tissues  It contains a high number of lymphocytes (white blood cells)
  4. 4.  Plasma leaks out of the capillaries to surround and bathe the body tissues and drains into the lymph vessels.  The lymph, flows through the lymphatic system to the biggest lymph vessel – the thoracic duct.  The thoracic duct then empties back into the blood circulation. 2 Fluid destinations of the lymph: 1. Blood stream/capillary walls 2. Intercellular spaces – lymph are collected in the open ended lymphatic system then collected into the lymph nodes.
  5. 5. LYMPH VESSELS  Also called lymphatics, carry lymph in only one direction – to the heart.  The smallest vessels are called lymph capillaries
  6. 6. LYMPH NODES  Are lymph that travels through the lymph vessels that are filtered through masses of tissues. They are concentrated in the following areas: 1. Neck 2. Armpit 3. Inner elbow 4. Groin
  7. 7.  These nodes range in size from microscopic to just under 1 inch (2.5 cm) in length.  Between 500 and 1,500 lymph nodes are located in the body; most of them usually occur in clusters.
  8. 8. Lymph nodes that you cannot feel in: 1. Abdomen 2. Pelvis 3. Chest  Lymphatic System includes other body organs. 1. Spleen 2. Thymus 3. Tonsils 4. Adenoids
  9. 9. FUNCTIONS OF LYMPHATIC SYSTEM  Drains fluid back into the bloodstream from the tissues  Filters lymph  Filters the blood  Fights infections
  10. 10. DRAINING FLUID INTO THE BLOODSTREAM The fluid leaks out from the blood vessels into the body tissues The leaked fluid drains into the lymph vessels Fluid will be carried through the lymph vessels to the base of the neck From neck, it is emptied back into the bloodstream
  11. 11. FILTERING LYMPH The lymph nodes filter the lymph fluid as it passes through. White blood cells attack any bacteria or viruses they find in the lymph as it flows through the lymph nodes. If cancer cells breakaway from a tumor, they often become stuck in the nearest lymph nodes. This is why doctors check lymph nodes first when they are working out how far a cancer has grown or spread.
  12. 12. FILTERING THE BLOOD This is the job of the spleen. It filters the blood to take out all the old worn out red blood cells and then destroys them. They are replaced by new red blood cells that are made in the bone marrow. The spleen also filters out bacteria, viruses and other foreign particles found in the blood. White blood cells in the spleen attack bacteria and viruses as they pass through.
  13. 13. FIGHTING INFECTION  Helping to make special white blood cells (lymphocytes) that produce antibodies  Having other blood cells called macrophages inside the lymph nodes which swallow up and kill any foreign particles, for example germs.
  14. 14. DISEASES THAT CAN IMPAIR LYMPHATIC SYSTEM  AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome): a disorder caused by a virus (HIV) that infects helper T cells and weakens immune response.  ALLERGY: an abnormal immune reaction to an otherwise harmless substance  AUTOIMMUNE DISEASE: condition in which the body produces antibodies that attack and destroy the body’s own tissues.  GRAVES’ DISEASE: disorder in which an antibody binds to specific cells in the thyroid gland, forcing them to secrete excess thyroid hormone.
  15. 15.  (HIV) Human Immunodeficiency Virus: which infects helper T cells and weakens immune responses, leading to the severe AIDS disorder  LYMPHADENITIS: inflammation of lymph nodes.  LYMPHOMA: general term applied to cancers of the lymphatic system, which include Hodgkin’s lymphoma and non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas.  MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS: disorder in which immune cells attack and destroy the insulation covering nerve fibers in the central nervous system, causing muscular weakness and loss of coordination.
  16. 16.  SYSTEMIC LUPUSERYTHEMATOSUS: also called lupus or SLE disorder, disorder in which antibodies attack the body’s own tissues as if they were foreign.  TONSILITIS: infection and swelling of the tonsils.