Lymph is a clear to pale-white fluid which circulates throughout the lymphatic system.
Lymph is a clear to pale-white fluid which circulates throughout the lymphatic system. The main role of the lymphatic system is to act as a filter against microbes, organic wastes and other debris. Let us have an overview of the composition and function of lymph.
The lymph comprises lymph plasma, lymph corpuscles and lymphoid organs. The composition of lymph is described below:
It consists of less calcium, few blood proteins, less phosphorus, and high glucose concentration. Globulin proteins which are actual antibodies are found in lymph plasma. Other substances include organic and inorganic substances.
These comprise leucocytes and amoeboid cells.
The lymphatic system consists of numerous lymph nodes deep inside the body. These lymph nodes are connected to lymphatic vessels which circulate the lymph throughout the body. The lymph gets filtered at the lymph nodes.
The spleen, tonsils, adenoids and the thymus all forms a part of the lymphatic system. The spleen is considered as the largest lymphatic organ in the system, which is located under the ribcage, above the stomach, and exactly in the left upper quadrant of the abdomen. Other parts of the lymphatic system – tonsils, adenoids and thymus are located on either side of the throat and neck.
Lymph performs many important functions. Few major functions of lymph are mentioned below:
In animals and human beings, extracellular fluid (fluid outside the cell) is divided into the interstitial fluid (the fluid which exists between the tissues) and plasma. It consists of small water-soluble substances which flow in between the tissue cells. Both plasma and interstitial fluid are the same due to the continuous exchange of small solutes, water and ions across the capillary walls of the tissues .
The functions of interstitial fluid are as follows:
The interstitial fluid is collected by the lymphatic system and the rest is drained out. The drained fluid moves back to the blood vessels and the remaining fluid is collected through the lymph capillaries, which is also known as lymphatic capillaries.