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An artery is a blood vessel that carries blood away from the heart to other parts of the body (with the exception of the pulmonary and the umbilical artery). Some arteries lead to your lungs. Arteries carry oxygen-rich blood within them. Arteries have thick covering, and are situated deep under the skin. Valves are not available in these vessels.

An aneurysm is something that will cause an artery to swell, making it likely that the artery will break or pop, which means that blood won’t get to the limb that the artery was in. If this happens, you should go to the hospital immediately, as some aneurysms. Aneurysms can weaken your artery. If your artery is weakened too much, it will grow bigger, and will get to an unhealthy size.

When the artery becomes so big that it pops, blood won’t be able to flow through it, and parts of the body won’t work. Swelling arteries can occur in the arms, neck, and legs. Swelling can also happen behind the knees. Doctors that treat some aneurysms do their job by giving the patient clotting factors directly with echolocation, or sound location.

There are three layers that make up arteries. The outer layer is made of a sort of stretchy tissue, and muscle is what the middle layer is made up of. The inner lining is made of cells that are the same as the cells that line blood vessels, and even the heart. Every time a heart beats, the stretchy walls of the artery expand so that the blood has room to go through the artery. Once the stretchy walls have completely stretched out, the muscles make the entire artery shrink back to its normal size, pushing the blood through.


  • "Arterial Aneurysms." NYU Langone's Cardiac and Vascular Institute. Langone Medical Center, 2012. Web. 16 Oct. 2012.
  • Simone, Joseph V. "Artery." World Book Advanced. World Book, 2012.Web. 18 Dec. 2012.