The circulatory system is an organ system that permits blood and lymph circulation to transport nutrients (such as amino acids and electrolytes), oxygen, carbon dioxide, hormones, blood cells, etc. to and from cells in the body to nourish it and help to fight diseases, stabilize body temperature and pH, and to maintain homeostasis.

Three sets of vessels comprise the circulatory system: arteries, lymphatics, and veins. Arteries bring oxygen-carrying blood from the heart to the tissues. In the normal course of blood circulation, small amounts of fluid and protein leak from arteries and veins. Lymphatic vessels bring this protein-rich fluid back into the circulation. The third type of blood vessel is the vein.

Veins bring oxygen-depleted blood from the organs and tissues to the heart and lungs, where it is re-oxygenated. Blood return to the heart tends to be passive and is enabled by muscle contraction in the arms and legs. Because the venous system is a low pressure one, the telltale complaints and physical signs of venous disease on which your physician relies for diagnosis are often subtle and sometimes require further testing. (Venous Disease) Diseases of the veins fall into two broad categories: blockage from a blood clot (thrombosis) and inadequate venous drainage (insufficiency).

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