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Lymphatic system: want to learn more about it?

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Lymphatic system

Learning Objectives

After completing this study unit you will learn how to:

  1. Name the main organs, vessels and nodes of the lymphatic system.
  2. List the main functions of the lymphatic system.

Watch videos

The lymphatic system works alongside our cardiovascular and immune systems to help our body maintain homeostasis. It has two important, yet different, roles. The first is to return interstitial fluid from our tissues back into the cardiovascular system. This is important for maintaining blood volume and cardiovascular function. The second role is to pass this fluid through lymphoid tissues and organs, where it can be filtered and presented to immune cells, thus defending the body against pathogens and disease. Watch the following video to learn more about the lymphatic system, including the network of lymphatic vessels, lymphoid tissues and organs from which it is composed.

Now let's take an introductory look at the main lymph nodes of the human body.

Take a quiz

Now that you have watched our lymphatic system videos, test your knowledge by taking the following quiz.

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Browse atlas

Summary

Key points
Main organs, vessels and nodes of the lymphatic system
Lymphatic vessels: right lymphatic duct, thoracic duct, cisterna chyli.

Lymphoid organs: tonsils (palatine, pharyngeal, lingual, tubal), thymus, spleen, peyer’s patches (aggregated lymphoid nodules).

Lymphoid tissues: cervical lymph nodes, submandibular lymph nodes, submental lymph nodes, axillary lymph nodes, subclavian lymph nodes, cubital lymph nodes, mediastinal lymph nodes, abdominal lymph nodes, superficial inguinal nodes, iliac lymph nodes, popliteal lymph nodes.
Functions of the lymphatic system Return interstitial fluid from our tissues back into the cardiovascular system.
Pass lymph through lymphatic tissues and organs, where it can be filtered and presented to immune cells.

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