Location Of Spleen In The Human Body – The spleen is located under the ribcage. It removes unhealthy, old and deformed red blood cells from the bloodstream.Nerthuz/iStock/Thinkstock

The spleen helps keep harmful microorganisms out of the bloodstream. It contains key components of the body’s immune system. The spleen also removes unhealthy, old, and deformed red blood cells from the bloodstream.

Location Of Spleen In The Human Body

Location Of Spleen In The Human Body

Red blood cells carry oxygen throughout the body and remove carbon dioxide (a waste product). These disc-shaped cells are filtered by the spleen based on their physical properties. They can only get back into the bloodstream if they can pass through a tiny structure in the spleen called the interendothelial gap. If the size, shape or ability of red blood cells to deform is altered, they cannot pass.

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Under certain conditions, such as hereditary spherocytosis, deformed red blood cells can become lodged in the spleen, leading to anemia. Additionally, some diseases—such as malaria, leukemia, and lymphoma—can cause the spleen to enlarge, causing it to filter out not only abnormal cells but also healthy red blood cells.

Studying how the human spleen filters faulty red blood cells has been challenging. The anatomy and physiology of the human spleen differs from those of common laboratory animal models. And invasive procedures like a biopsy or needle aspiration can cause dangerous bleeding. A research team led by Dr. Subra Suresh from Carnegie Mellon University and Dr. MIT’s Ming Dao approached the problem using computer simulation tools. Their work was partially funded by the US National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI). The study was published online in

The team developed computer simulations of the mechanics of red blood cells as they pass through the spleen. The researchers found that cells deform significantly as they pass through the narrow spleen slit. They found that this is in contrast to the simple spherical deformation that occurs in narrow blood capillaries.

The analyzes revealed the limits of surface area and volume within which red blood cells can pass through the spleen. The work showed how the splenic space determines the size and shape distribution of healthy red blood cells. The team’s predictions were consistent with independent experimental results using healthy, artificially modified and infected human red blood cells.

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“The computational and analytical models from this work, as well as a variety of experimental observations, suggest a more detailed picture of how the physiology of the human spleen likely influences several important geometric properties of red blood cells,” says Suresh.

“We have presented results showing that the spleen is the main organ that determines the shape of circulating red blood cells,” adds Dao.

This work could lead to a better understanding of the role of the spleen in various disease states. The results could have implications for future therapeutic approaches.

Location Of Spleen In The Human Body

References:Biomechanics of red blood cells in the human spleen and consequences for physiology and disease. Pivkin IV, Peng Z, Karniadakis GE, Buffet PA, Dao M, Suresh S.

Human Body Lymph Nodes Spleen Anatomy Stock Illustration 2321867975

Funding: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI); National Science Foundation; US Department of Energy; Swiss platform for advanced scientific computing; and Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology.

Research Matters is a weekly update of peer-reviewed research highlights. It is published by the Office of Communications and Public Liaison in the Director’s Office. The spleen is an organ that, under normal conditions, is located in the upper left quadrant of the abdominal cavity and to the left of the stomach.

Although the size and shape of a person’s spleen can vary, the organ often has the appearance of a purple color, is about 10 cm long, and is shaped like a clenched fist.

The spleen is essentially made up of two types of tissue: red pulp and white pulp. The red pulp is responsible for filtering the blood and removing old or damaged red blood cells as well as foreign matter and abnormal cells. The white pulp is responsible for producing immune cells such as T lymphocytes and B lymphocytes, which help fight infections and diseases. The spleen also helps fight certain types of bacteria that can lead to pneumonia and meningitis.

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In addition to these functions, the spleen also stores red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets and can release these cells into the bloodstream when needed, such as during injury or infection. It also helps regulate blood volume in the body by removing excess red blood cells and storing them when needed. The spleen is often referred to as the “graveyard of erythrocytes”.

Overall, the spleen plays an important role in maintaining the body’s health by filtering the blood, storing blood cells, producing immune cells, and regulating blood volume.

Because it stores a blood reserve in the event of hemorrhagic shock, the spleen is also known as our body’s blood bank.

Location Of Spleen In The Human Body

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Your spleen is an organ above your stomach and below your ribs on your left side. It’s about the size of your fist. The spleen is part of your lymphatic system, which fights infections and keeps your body fluids balanced. It contains white blood cells that fight germs. Your spleen also helps control the amount of blood in your body and destroys old and damaged cells.

Location Of Spleen In The Human Body

Certain illnesses can cause your spleen to swell. You can also damage or rupture your spleen if it is injured, especially if it is already swollen. If your spleen is too damaged, it may need to be surgically removed. You can live without a spleen. Other organs, such as your liver, take over some of the spleen’s work. However, without a spleen, your body loses some of its ability to fight infections.

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