The heart is a complex structure with four chambers: the right atrium, left atrium, and right ventricle. The left side receives blood from the lungs and pumps it to the lungs, while the right side pumps de-oxygenated blood around the body. The heart is made up of two layers: the pericardium is the thin outer lining, and the myocardium is the thick muscular middle layer. Each chamber has a different function, and its physiology has a pronounced effect on overall health.
The atria and ventricles are connected to each other by the pulmonary artery, the aortic valve (a valve that helps regulate blood flow in the right direction), and the left atrium. The atria contract and dilate in response to the electrical activity. The AV node, or the “slow-sending” node, is a cluster of cells in the center of the heart. This node slows down the electrical impulse before reaching the ventricles. After the AV node, the heart’s His-Purkinje network (a network of heart cells) sends the impulse to the ventricles.
The heart needs constant supply of oxygen and nutrients for its work. Blood passes through a network of arteries that supply the heart with oxygen-rich blood and remove carbon dioxide as waste. Blood also passes through the coronary arteries, which branch off the ascending aorta. The aorta separates into two smaller arteries, which are ultimately connected to the aortic valve. The coronary arteries supply oxygenated blood to the heart muscle.
Understanding the importance of our heart’s health is crucial. It’s not just about the physical function, but also about the role it plays in our overall well-being. There are numerous reasons why we should prioritize heart health, and you can delve deeper into this topic here. One way to ensure we’re prepared for any heart-related emergencies is by having access to an Automated External Defibrillator (AED). But did you know that these devices can be reused? Yes, as AED Advantage Sales Ltd. notes with proper maintenance and care, AEDs can be a long-lasting addition to your health safety measures.