Surprising facts about the heart and circulatory system

The most complex creation of the universe, undoubtedly, is the human brain. But our heart and circulatory system is no less exciting. The correspondent of BBC Future says a few interesting facts about them.

Неожиданные факты о сердце и кровеносной системе

The heart pumps a lot of blood

Our heart is a very hardworking organ.

Within five minutes, he pumps five liters of blood. Per hour heart makes an average of 4200 beats and pumps 300 gallons of blood.

Within one year it pumps enough blood to fill an Olympic pool is 2.5 million liters — and this makes for 38.5 million cuts.

Heartbeat affects the behavior

When we have to make a difficult decision, we often say that “I made this choice to heart.”

But did you know that the expression can have a literal meaning? Heart rate affects our feelings, emotions, and even intuition — pain and empathy to another person to the suspicion that your man can change you.

The researcher agustín Ibanez from the University of Favaloro in Buenos Aires had the unique opportunity to test this hypothesis, when he met a man with two hearts.

Carlos (the man’s name changed) had another heart, mechanical, located in the chest just below his real heart. Carlos had a heart transplant, which helped to work his weak heart muscles.

As a result, Carlos had a feeling that his heart “sank” in the stomach, and this is the beginning of an amazing influence on his perception of reality and even mind.

Scientists have found a way to live without blood

What happens when our heart stops? Is it possible to bring someone back to life from the moment of clinical death, when all the basic life functions — heartbeat, brain activity stopped?

Today, surgeons tried a radical new procedure. They replaced the patient’s blood with saline in an attempt to prolong his life.

This pilot study, I think, blurs the line between life and death. The patient’s body is cooled to about 10-15 C. Since the metabolism in the body have ceased, blood is not needed in order to deliver oxygen into the cells. Replacing blood with cold salt water is the best way to maintain the overall low body temperature.

We still don’t know why we have different blood groups

One of the greatest mysteries of our circulatory system remains unsolved for over a century.

We still really know why people have different blood groups. We know they are determined using a variety of molecules on the surface of red blood cells. The importance of this process, because the enzymes in our body recognize red blood cells with these molecules.

That’s why blood transfusions a person can only appropriate group — another group of enzymes will not be able to recognize.

But why do we have different blood groups? Why nature has not done so, so we all had a versatile set of molecules in blood cells?

One day we will be able to live with an artificial heart … or the heart of a pig

Xenotransplantation — using animal tissues in humans — originates from at least 1682, when Dutch surgeon job van Jansson Meekeren reported on the successful transplantation of a fragment of dog bone in the skull of the Russian soldier.

Now researchers are actively studying the possibility of transplanting human hearts of other animals, such as pigs.

Another area of research aims to grow the human heart with the help of tissue engineering.

Some people drink blood, although it doesn’t do any good

Perhaps the most amazing use of the blood is the consumption of it inside, preferably fresh, to facilitate a range of medical complaints.

In different places of the world, there are entire communities of people who drink fresh human blood for medicinal purposes. Dose of the red drink they kindly give relatives, friends or volunteers.

These “medical vampires” claim that regular intake blood helps them to relieve such symptoms as headache, fatigue, stomach pain, which is not valid for any other treatment.

However, scientists believe that the drinking of blood is unlikely to have any benefit, and the relief that it brings — actually just the placebo effect. But the fact that people feel better, suggests how powerful an effect the mind produces the ritual consumption of human blood.