17 Differences between arteries and veins arteries vs veins gas or electricity more expensive


At the end of these networks, the tiny vessels, known as the capillaries, can be found. Among these three, the capillaries are the easiest to distinguish because of their size. In general, all the types of blood vessels mentioned above possess the same basic structures: outer, middle, and innermost layers.

The outermost layer is made of connective tissues that function to supply the inner layers with nutrients. In this layer, numerous nerve networks can be found. The next layer is composed of the smooth muscle and underneath it is the innermost layer (called endothelium). The innermost layer is made up of connective tissues.

Despite having a seemingly similar structure, these blood vessels differ in many aspects. Each of them is morphologically modified to carry out its function, as well as to adapt to various situations. Hence, in this article, let’s explore the differences between the two major blood vessels in the body: the arteries and veins. Learn more about their structures, functions, and other characteristics below. Differences Between Arteries and Veins

On the other hand, veins are a type of blood vessels characterized by having a larger lumen and contain numerous valves. Because of this kind of morphology, veins function to return the deoxygenated (oxygen-poor) blood from different parts of the body back to the heart.

The conducting arteries are further subdivided regarding their size: larger and smaller ones. As their names suggest, they aid in the conduction of oxygenated blood away from the heart. In humans, the aorta is considered to be the largest artery.

Regarding their histology, veins, particularly the venules (smaller veins) serve as the drainage of blood from the capillaries. On their way to the heart, they are transported via larger veins and ultimately to either of the two largest veins: Superior Vena Cava (if the returning blood is coming from tissues and organs that are located above the heart) and Inferior Vena Cava (if the returning blood is coming from tissues and organs that are located below the heart).

Interestingly, as compared with larger ones, smaller arteries that contain a number of smooth muscle tissues for the reason that they can regulate the pressure during blood flow. This change in pressure, which is due to the pumping of the heart, is divided into two: diastolic (low pressure) and systolic (high pressure). When one takes a pulse rate, the pressure felt is due to the change in the arterial pressure.

As an exception, the pulmonary artery is the only artery that does not carry oxygenated blood. The type of blood that this artery carries has already moved and been transported around the body and is now on its way back to the heart. The pulmonary artery pumps that blood to the lungs to remove the waste products and get more oxygen.

As an exception, the pulmonary vein is the only type of vein that does not carry deoxygenated blood. Instead, it transports the newly oxygenated blood from the lungs back to the heart. Eventually, this blood will be transported in the body via the arteries.

Because of the impairment of the endothelial cells, arteries tend to enter a pathological state. Other factors like too much cholesterol, pathogens, and other stimuli trigger the endothelial cells to resort thicken the arterial wall and form a plaque. Some of the most common diseases that affect arteries are atherosclerosis, vasculitis, and myocardial infarction.

Because the veins only pump blood under low pressure, diseases and disorders are often too difficult to diagnose. Most of the time, the diseases of the veins occur due to inadequate venous blood drainage (venous insufficiency) and blood clot resulting in blockage (thrombosis). As compared with those of the arteries, diseases associated with the veins are often very common, curable, and hardly fatal.

Overall, it is highly important to decipher the differences between these two blood vessels for us to gain more understanding of their nature and physiology. This knowledge will further facilitate medical and therapeutic advancements, thus improving treatment methods and therapies.