CNRI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CNRI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Heart arteries. Coloured X-ray of the coronary arteries (red) of a healthy human heart. The coronary arteries form a network that branches over the surface of the heart to supply oxygenated blood direct to the heart muscle. The heart beats continuously to supply blood to the rest of the body, and needs a constant supply of oxygen. Any blockage of these arteries will interrupt the supply and trigger a heart attack. The arteries have been highlighted by arteriography: injecting them with a radio-opaque medium to absorb the X- rays. The red line at right is the catheter used to inject this material. The X-ray also shows some bones (green). The curved bones are some of the ribs enclosing the chest. They are attached to the bony column down left, which is the thoracic part of the backbone.
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