The human heart works like a pump sending blood around your body to keep you alive.
It’s a muscle, about the size of your fist, in the middle of your chest tilted slightly to the left.
Each day, your heart beats around 100,000 times. This continuously pumps about five litres (eight pints) of blood around your body through a network of blood vessels called your circulatory system. This blood delivers oxygen and nutrients to all parts of your body, and carries away unwanted carbon dioxide and waste products.
Your heart and circulatory system works together to deliver blood to your organs so they can function..
The structure of your heart
Your heart is made up of three layers of tissue:
- Pericardium – a thin outer lining that protects and surrounds your heart.
- Myocardium – a thick muscular middle layer that contracts and squeezes blood out of your heart.
- Endocardium – a thin inner lining. Inside the heart there are four chambers – two on the left and two on the right.
Inside the heart there are four chambers – two on the left and two on the right.
- The two small upper chambers are called the atria.
- The two larger lower chambers are called the ventricles.
- The left and right sides of the heart are divided by a thin muscular wall called the septum.
To keep your heart pumping, the sinus node – known as your heart’s natural pacemaker – sends electrical signals through your heart
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