Bone Marrow

The bone marrow is a soft spongy tissue present inside the bones, especially the hip bone and the thigh bone and is considered to be a major manufacturing hub inside our body. The primary function of the bone marrow is to produce blood, more precisely speaking, it is responsible for producing the different type of blood cells. In effect, the bone marrow replaces the entire blood in our body after every 20 days. In effect, the change of our blood in our body is an ongoing system taking place every second. Though it may seem to be incredible, each second the bone marrow manufactures over ten million different types of blood cells that circulate in our bloodstream. Simultaneously, around ten million different blood cells expire every second, maintaining a sound balance all through.

The bone marrow functions accurately following some strict regulations - in effect, it changes to the regulations and requirement by enhancing or lowering production of blood cells. In other words, the bone marrow has the ability to become accustomed to each and every situation that may be happening in our body. For instance, when we are infected by any virus, bacteria, fungus or parasites, the bone marrow enhances the production of white blood cells or leukocytes in order to enable the body to combat the pathogens in a more effective manner. And, when the contagion has been brought under control, it lowers the production of white blood cells to the normal standard. Similarly, when the body is losing blood owing to hemorrhage, the bone marrow increases the production of the red blood cells and when the bleeding is restrained, the production of the red blood cells comes down to the regular level.

In addition to regulating the production of the red blood cells and white blood cells to combat infections and deal with hemorrhages, the bone marrow also responses to specific biological occurrences. For instance, when an individual is positioned at a high altitude where availability of oxygen is not enough, the bone marrow increases the production of red blood cells with a view to supply more oxygen to the different organs of the body. In fact, athletes who are familiar with this biological occurrence actually train at higher altitudes prior to participating in the competitions. As a result, when they get back to the sea level, they are able to enhance their performance owing to better oxygen supply to their muscles. In fact, the bone marrow possesses a fluid uniformity and is present in the middle of all bones in our body. The bone marrow encloses stem cells that have the aptitude to proliferate as well as manufacture new blood cells. This property of the bone marrow helps to refurbish the supply of blood throughout our body during our entire lifespan. This ability of the bone marrow is known as the hemopoietic system. These stem cells may even enter on the bloodstream making use of a hormone known as the colony stimulating factor.

Especially, the bone marrow is present in the hip bone, the femur bone and the sternum (a series of bones that extend the length of the middle line of the ventral portion of the body of majority of vertebrates). In fact, these bones enclose the maximum number of stem cells required to produce new blood cells. This is the primary reason why physician often resort to bone marrow biopsies and bone marrow punctures. These two examinations help them to diagnose a number of ailments, especially leukemia - blood cancer.

Formation of blood clot

Blood clotting is so vital for our body that it would be impossible for us to exist in the absence of the methods by means of which our body blocks the split or rupture in the arteries and veins every time stopping hemorrhages. In fact, we are very prone to accidents, such as cuts, traumas and fractures, that may result in open wounds in our blood vessels and the mechanism to form blood clots helps us to prevent any excessive loss of blood that is vital for our survival. If our body did not possess the ability to form blood clots, we would have lost excessive blood every time we met with any accident and this would have put our life in peril each time. It may be noted here that there are numerous malevolent medical conditions that deteriorates the aptitude of our body in forming blood clots.

Depletion of blood may be external as well as internal. External hemorrhages occur when there is any rupture or split in the blood vessels present just beneath the skin. On the other hand, internal hemorrhages take place when the blood vessels located within the organs like brain, stomach, kidney and intestines rupture or break. While trivial hemorrhages or blood depletion from the body may be restrained without much effort by means of formation of blood clots, surgeries may be essential for stopping major blood outflows from the body. For instance, if a comparatively large blood vessel is broken, it may be essential to stitch to get the two walls of the blood vessel to join and thereby, control the loss of blood.

It may be mentioned here that blood clot formation is also known as coagulation of blood or hemostasis. In order to facilitate blood clot formation it is essential to possess sufficient numbers of platelets in the bloodstream. In addition, it also requires the presence of matter called coagulation factors that are present in blood plasma. In fact, there are 12 such factors and a Roman numerical represents every factor that is involved in the formation of blood clots. In fact, each of these 12 factors are identified by a Roman number from I to XII, with the factors VIII and IX being most crucial. These 12 blood coagulation factors respond with each other in a sequence and appear in the shape of a trellis or fencing that includes platelets to form a blood clot.

Reasons for enhanced bleeding

Under normal circumstances, whenever there is any cut or injury in the body, blood flows to the area and the factors responsible for forming blood clots act swiftly to stop the bleeding in a few minutes. Nevertheless, many factors, such as deficiency in the number of platelets, some ailments, some varieties of medications and insufficiency of vitamins in the body, may also inhibit the formation of blood clot. By inhibiting the process of blood clot formation, these factors actually enhances the risks of serious hemorrhages.

Drugs that delay blood clot formation
Aspirin is a widely used medicine that is said to influence blood clot formation. In effect, aspirin actually lowers the competence of the platelets in forming blood clots and thereby, bleeding from any cuts or injuries continues for prolonged periods. Although it may seem to be incredible, the consequences of taking a single aspirin tablet will linger inside the body for over two weeks. In addition to aspirin, antibiotics as well as anti-inflammatory medications may also have a downbeat impact on blood coagulation or formation of blood clots. Patients enduring malignant blood ailments should never use any medication that lowers the competence of platelets in forming blood clots without talking to their physician. This is important because such medications may lead to acute cases of hemorrhages.
At the same time, it needs to be mentioned here that often physicians purposely recommend the usage of certain medications that actually slows down the coagulation of blood or blood clot formation. Such medications are known as 'blood thinners' and are useful in treating patients with artificial heart valves. In addition, anti-coagulants, as these medications are known, are also effective in treating patients who have endured phlebitis (inflammation of a vein) or pulmonary embolism (obstruction of pulmonary arteries) at any point in their life.
Ailments inhibiting blood clot formation
In addition, a number of congenital or inherent ailments also have negative influences on the factors that help in the blood coagulation or blood clot formation. The most common diseases in this category include type A hemophilia and type B hemophilia. Acute liver diseases also lower the competency of the platelets or blood clot forming factors in blood coagulation. In addition all malignant blood ailments as well as kidney diseases also result in renal failure. Harsh cases of infections as well as particular inflammatory ailments may also have an influence on blood clot formation.
Vitamin insufficiency
Cases of vitamin deficiency may often worsen owing to malnutrition or poor absorption of foods ingested. Such vitamin insufficiencies may also result in increased blood outflow from the body - both internally and externally. It may be noted that vitamin K is vital in the development of II, VII, IX, and X factors responsible for blood clot formation. In fact, vitamin K deficiency results in a decline in the number of these factors, subsequently inhibiting the series of reactions that result in blood clot formation. In addition to vitamin K deficiency, insufficiency of folic acid, vitamin C and vitamin B12 may also result in inadequate blood clot formation and thereby, enhanced hemorrhages.

Indications of coagulation troubles

Often symptoms, such as petechia (small red dots) or purpura and bruises (larger blotches) on the skin are indication of problems that are primarily caused by the ineffectiveness of the platelets. Several researches have established that bleeding in the stomach, other areas of the intestine as well as hermarthrosis (bleeding inside the joints) are usually related to problems caused by the lack of proper functioning of the factors involved in blood clot formation.

However, bleeding is always not harmful or unusual and it may be a normal process even in healthy individuals. For instance, bleeding related to some types of superficial cuts as well as menstruation are some natural types of bleedings in healthy people. Nevertheless, even in such cases if the bleeding period or quantity appears to be abnormal, it is essential to seek medical help. You need to talk to your physician in such instances in order to find out the reasons for and treat the bleeding. In fact, the fundamental blood examination process includes evaluating the platelets and the blood coagulation factors.

Blood and major systems of the body

As discussed earlier, blood is an important fluid substance that is essential for all the body organs to survive as well as carry out their normal functions because it transports nourishing substances as well as oxygen required by our body. In addition, blood also performs a crucial role in getting our body rid of the waste materials. Blood collects the toxic substances from all over the body and transports them to the organs that expel them from the body. In fact, topographical anatomy or the study of anatomy and the functioning of the human body is an extremely multifaceted subject. The human body comprises numerous structures or arrangements that do not comprise everything regarding the human anatomy. Nevertheless, they are related to blood and, as a result, they frequently have an influence on malevolent blood ailments.

A number of cancerous blood ailments, such as childhood leukemia, are often inclined to expand to or encompass the central nervous system. Physicians try to find out the existence of leukemic cells by regularly examining the cerebrospinal fluid and thereby, alter the remedial course. In case it is found that the cancerous cells are present in the cerebrospinal fluid, it is necessary to treat the central nervous system with radiation to put off specific types of leukemia. In such instances, the chemotherapy drugs are directly inserted into the cerebrospinal fluid by means of intrathecal injections.



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