(5)
Lymphatic & Blood Systems
31st August 2017
(7)
Metabolic Syndrome
31st August 2017

(6)
The Human Heart

THE HUMAN HEART

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THE HUMAN HEART IS THE ENGINE that keeps you alive, just like the engine in your car, your heart needs looking after. If you don’t maintain the engine in your car, it could let you down. Likewise, if you don’t look after and maintain your heart it could let you down. Plus, if you put the wrong fuel in your car, the pipes taking fuel to the engine can cause things to clog up, likewise if you don’t maintain a healthy blood supply, your arteries can start to block causing heart problems.

THE HEART IS A MUSCLE, to be medically correct the muscle tissue is called the myocardium, more commonly referred to as the cardiac muscle. There are three muscles in the human body, skeletal muscles, smooth muscles and cardiac muscle, albeit, the is only one cardiac muscle. Skeletal muscles are one of many muscles that are used in walking, lifting weights and many more functions, every movement of the muscle is voluntary. Smooth muscles are found in organs such as the stomach, lungs, and intestines, smooth muscles are involuntary. More on skeletal muscles in other sections.

 
The Cardiac Muscle works totally different to the other muscles in your body. Although the brain can speed up or slow down your heartrate, due to release of hormones and other factors, providing the is a supply of oxygenated blood from the lungs, the heart muscle can continue to beat without any connection to the brain. The heart will beat on its own, this is referred to as automaticity, the heart will beat at a set rate called the intrinsic heart rate, around 100 beats per minute.

The Heart is able to function on its own as it’s own pacemaker, totally independent from the brain, its possible for the human body to still have a heartbeat even if the brain has died.

WHERE IS YOUR HEART?

 
WHERE IS YOUR HEART? It’s located between your lungs, around 80% of the heart is close to the left lung, sitting just above your stomach and liver behind the breast bone. The size of your heart is roughly the size of a large grapefruit and weighs around 10 ounces (283 grams) .

HOW DOES YOU HEART WORK?

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Your Heart, your Circulatory System


 

Life2Moro ®'s Interactive Heart Diagram

Interactive Heart Diagram

1. Please hover your mouse over each section in the diagram of the heart.

2. Certain areas will become highlighted.

3. Each area that becomes highlighted is then clickable.

4. Click the highlighted area to reveal that part of the hearts particular function.

5. If clicked in alphabetical order the whole process of a single heartbeat is described step-by-step.

THIS DIAGRAM abbreviates what I’ve detailed. It shows how your blood has travelled through your arteries around your body and then returns via your veins to the Right Atrium, to receive a fresh supply of oxygen. It is explained in each step by step click from (A) to (P)...

(A) Right Attrium

Deoxygenated blood from the upper body enters the Right Atrium (A).

(B) Superior Vena Cava

The deoxygenated blood from the upper body comes in from through the Superior Vena Cava (B).

(C) Inferior Vena Cava

Blood from the lower body enters the right atrium through the Inferior Vena Cave (C).

(D) Triscupid Valve & (E) Right Ventricle

As the heart contracts a valve opens (D) and forces blood into the Right Ventricle (E).

(F) Pulmonary Valve

All the valves in your heart only allow blood to pass in one direction. Then valve (F) opens and blood is ejected into the Pulmonary Artery, which then divides into the Left Pulmonary Artery (G) and Right Pulmonary Artery (H).

(G) Left Pulmonary Artery

When valve (F) opens it forces blood out into the Left Pulmonary Artery (G) and to the left lung, where the blood expels the Carbon Dioxide and receives freshly oxygenated blood.

(H) Right Pulmonary Arteries

When valve (F) opens it forces blood out into the Right Pulmonary Artery (G) and to the Right lung, where the blood expels the Carbon Dioxide and receives freshly oxygenated blood.

(J) Left Pulmonary Veins

The oxygenated blood returns to the heart via the two Left Pulmonary Veins (J) entering the ...

(K) Left Atrium

... the Left Atrium (K) ...

(L) Right Pulmonary Veins

... and the two Right Pulmonary Veins (L) also entering the Left Atrium (K).

(M) Mitral Valve

Oxygenated blood from the Left Atrium (K) is then passed through the Mitral Valve (M) ...

(N) Left Ventricle

... to the Left Ventricle (N).

(O) Aortic Valve

Freshly oxygenated blood from the Left Ventricle is then pumped out through valve (O) into the Aorta (P) and throughout the body to start its journey again.

(P) Aorta

... via the Aorta (P) to start its journey ending up back at Right Atrium (A).

It’s hard to believe that all of what I’ve described above happens in one heartbeat.

WHAT IS A HEART ATTACK?

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A heart attack, medically referred to as a myocardial infarction is a serious medical emergency. In simple terms your heart will start to fail if there is a blockage in your arteries, stopping oxygen rich blood reaching your heart, causing the heart muscle to start dying. Should this happen immediate treatment is required, a fast response is required to stop or minimise damage to heart muscle otherwise scar tissue will form.

Sudden Cardiac Arrest is a heart condition, sometimes referred to as a heart attack, this is wrong. Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA), is not a heart attack. SCA starts when the electrical system inside the heart becomes faulty. The human heart has its own built in pacemaker called the SA Node, this node sends out electrical impulses in a continuous rhythm, to the AV Node conducting the impulses to the ventricles causing heart muscle to contract, resulting in your heart beating around 70 beats per minute. It’s worth mentioning that the human brain is not responsible for the beat of your heart, however the brain together with hormones influence the heart rate.

It’s when the rhythm of the heart becomes abnormal, medically called an arrhythmia, that causes the heart to beat too fast (called tachycardia) or too slow, (called bradycardia). The most common side effect of an arrhythmia, which is life threatening is referred to as ventricular fibrillation, when this happens it can stop the ventricles in the heart from pumping blood, blood pressure drops, resulting in loss of consciousness to the brain and organs. Without immediate treatment of CPR and a defibrillator, the brain dies causing death.

Some research indicates a high proportion of sudden cardiac arrest cases occurs in the age bracket between mid-thirty’s and fifty. On many times there’s been no history of heart disease.
It’s worth remembering:
Heart conditions can cause high blood pressure.
High blood pressure can cause heart disease.

SYMPTOMS OF A HEART ATTACK

 

 

What is Angina?

Medically referred to as angina pectoris is a chest pain due to the lack of oxygen to the heart muscle. This condition can feel like pressure on your chest and due to the lack of oxygen, feel like being suffocated. Any of these symptoms should be checked, it’s possible it could lead to a heart attack. Angina is also related to blood pressure, the higher the blood pressure will cause more symptoms. Higher than normal blood pressure puts a strain on the heart wall requiring more oxygen.

All our organs which include the kidneys, liver, gall bladder, stomach, and others, require oxygenated blood to function correctly, however people with Coronary Heart Disease (CHD) have arteries which have plaque within their arteries, the plaque can be caused by fatty deposits, the plaque causes your arteries to narrow.
Because your arteries are now partially blocked, when you exercise or do anything to increase your heartrate the arteries can’t get enough fresh oxygenated blood to your organs, the medical term for this condition is called ‘Cardiac Ischemia’ it means the volume of blood flowing through your arteries is reduced resulting in your heart not receiving enough oxygen, this condition is referred to as Angina. When you rest, your heartrate goes down and the pain can subside.

Danger of Stress!

Although there are many obvious causes of high blood pressure and heart disease, another cause of heart problems can be caused by stress. If you are a person who occasional has a stressful situation, then this section is not so important.

However, if you’re a person who leads a busy life at work, spends time driving to work and encountering traffic jams, maybe have personal problems, may have money worries, you’re a Mum looking after children but still must work, cook and manage the house. Then it’s possible people can be stressed to a level that it affects their health, I’ve written below some of the information I’ve discovered about the possible dangers of a stressful life.
There is a lot of information on stress in section 19, below I’ve included some information on hormones and the effect they have on the body.
Linking Stress to high blood pressure and heart disease is not straight forward. From research, there is no evidence that stress alone causes long term high blood pressure and in-turn heart disease. However, when the human body gets into a stressful situation it produces different hormones, below are a few examples:

Adrenaline, Norepinephrine, Cortisol

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Cortisol

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Cortisol is a steroid hormone, when it’s used for medication it’s called hydrocortisone, this has many uses including, inflammation, arthritis, immune disorders and a lot more.
Cortisol is released into the blood stream under stressful situations, this hormone increases blood sugar but suppresses the body’s immune system. Cortisol is always present in the blood stream, the level of cortisol is higher in the morning, lower towards the end of the day, reducing even lower when we sleep. More on sleep in section 25.

The levels of cortisol in the body shouldn’t be too low nor should they be too high, it’s when the levels are outside accepted levels the may kick in.
Cortisol plays an important part when the body is stressed, cortisol manages stress in the body by shutting down important functions such as the reproduction and immune system, this assists our bodies to direct our energy and cope with stressful situations.
So far all is good, your body is coping with the stressful situation, your blood pressure will have risen and should reduce once the stressful situation is resolved and you are relaxed and in control.

However, should stress levels continue, even at a lower level day in day, cortisol can start to cause many problems, some of which are:
  • Cortisol causes ‘Gluconeogenesis which is responsible for making glucose in your liver.
  • Cortisol can stop insulin from getting into the cells in your body, this results in glucose remaining in the blood stream, not good.
  • Cortisol can also shut down parts of the immune system which can leave your body open to infection.
  • Cortisol can cause the body to retain salt (Sodium) causing blood pressure to rise.
  • Cortisol can cause problems with the supply of thyroid hormones.
  • Cortisol can cause an increase in gastric acid with in turn can give problems with the intestines.
  • Cortisol in levels higher than normal can cause you to feel hungry and binge food.
 
Cortisol is regulated by the Pituitary Gland which is located behind the eyes and is part of the Endocrine system which is responsible for producing the hormones that control our bodies.

The objective of this web site

The objective of this web site is to provide information allowing people to understand in simple terms what happens to our bodies when things go wrong, allowing you to make informed decisions, and try and identify the possible causes of hypertension, heart disease and other conditions, plus what can cause the body to retain fat and increase body weight. If the cause can be identified, then changing lifestyle is a better solution rather than taking supplements and other medication.

Always remember

Always remember, if you experience chest pain you should seek urgent medical assistance. The good news is that in some cases, bypass surgery, stents and other procedures may help treat conditions relating to the heart. Should you have any concerns, questions about any information on this website, you should talk to your doctor or medical professional.

The objective in writing this web site is to try and explain more about blood pressure and stress, explaining the possible damage your heart. There is also a lot of information that may help in bringing down blood pressure and stress to acceptable levels and may also have an impact on your quality of life. Stress seems to be part of our lives even when we try to remain calm. In the Members Section 19, there are suggestions how stress can be managed.
This whole website is all about keeping you informed and how you live your Life2Moro ®

MEMBERS SECTION

The information above has been written to give you an overview of each subject in an easy to read format. I took this decision as some of the information I’ve read is very detailed and uses medical terms that from my perspective take some understanding. For those who want to read more, I have provided further information in the ‘Members Section’ of Life2Moro ®
Should you choose to become a member of the Life2Moro ® Medical Media Site, you will be part of “A Never-Ending Website” where you can make friends in Public & Private Chat Rooms - Use the Forum - Create your own Profile - Exchange information about your medical experiences, anonymously or with new friends. There is more information in the Members Section.


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