Document Type

Handbook, Guide or Manual (Third Edition)

Publication Date (Third Edition)




Cardiovascular problems affect all people who have a spinal cord injury. It has been noted to be particularly problematic for those over 65 years old and those who have been injured for more than 30 years. Due to this problem affecting many people, it needs to be addressed early in your rehabilitation as well as throughout your life.

Description of the Cardiovascular System

The cardiovascular system contains the heart and the blood vessels. The heart is a muscular pump in the chest that receives blood from blood vessels from all over the body. As the heart beats, it delivers blood to the lungs so that oxygen can be exchanged. This oxygenated blood is then given back to the heart and pumped to all the organs throughout the body. The blood vessels are the arteries, capillaries and veins that are located throughout the body. The blood vessels carry blood to all the tissues of the body and remove the tissues’ waste products.

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