Q:

What does it mean if you have dark-colored blood?

A:

Quick Answer

Dark-colored blood, called venous blood, is dark because it has become deoxygenated after having traveled through the body before returning to the heart drained of oxygen. Blood leaving the heart, called arterial blood, is pumped from the lungs back to the heart by the pulmonary artery, and it contains a large amount of oxygen for delivery around the body. Arterial blood, therefore, appears a brighter red than deoxygenated venous blood.

Continue Reading
What does it mean if you have dark-colored blood?
Credit: Jordan Mansfield Getty Images Sport Getty Images

Full Answer

Blood gets its color from red blood cells called hemoglobin, to which oxygen binds. Ninety-seven percent of the oxygen transported by the blood from the lungs is carried by hemoglobin. Besides carrying oxygen around the body, hemoglobin helps remove carbon dioxide from the body. The difference in color between venous blood and arterial blood is known as the arteriovenous oxygen difference. Venous blood is also colder than arterial blood due to its lower oxygen content and pH.

A popular and persistent misconception indicates that deoxygenated blood is blue because veins may appear to be blue due to the way light is diffused by the epidermis. Human skin may also take on a bluish color, known as cyanosis, sometimes as a result of certain medical conditions; however, deoxygenated human blood is never blue.

Learn more about Blood

Related Questions

  • Q:

    How do you read a blood flow diagram?

    A:

    All of the blue-colored blood vessels on a blood flow diagram show passages carrying deoxygenated blood from the heart to the lungs, while all of the red-colored passages show oxygenated blood being circulated throughout the body. The heart's right chambers pump deoxygenated blood, while the left chambers pump oxygenated blood.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How does blood circulate through the body?

    A:

    Blood circulation is regulated by the circulatory system, and blood is distributed throughout the body by the heart. It flows from the heart into arteries that branch into smaller veins and capillaries.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How are red blood cells specialized?

    A:

    According to Springfield Technical Community College, the primary role red blood cells play in the body is to transport oxygen from the lungs to the various body tissues. To carry out this task, the cells are filled with a substance called hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is so important to red blood cells that its molecules comprise one-third of the cell’s volume.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is deoxygenated blood?

    A:

    According to For Dummies, deoxygenated blood is blood that has no oxygen. Blood becomes deoxygenated after receiving carbon dioxide in exchange for carbon dioxide, which occurs at the cell membrane during respiration and circulation.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore