Why Do Some of Our Blood Vessels Look Blue?

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Blood vessels look blue because they are veins carrying de-oxygenated blood back to the heart. Blood is only red when it is combined with oxygen. Identify veins by their blue color with information from a nurse and respiratory therapist in this free video on blood vessels.

Part of the Video Series: Blood Vessels
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Video Transcript

Why does some of our blood vessels look blue? If you were to look at your arm, especially if you are a thin-walled with vessels with the skin, you would see that the veins look really dark. It's because they have lack of oxygen because they're carrying it back to the right side of the heart to go to the lungs to be oxygenated. So, when you look at the veins, it looks bluish color or purplish color because of the lack of the oxygen, because it's not an oxygen carrying system. It is to carry it back to be oxygenated. It's already gone through the exchange to the tissue level from the arteries to the capillaries. It's going back to the right side of the heart to return to the lungs for oxygenation. Because the vena's system is the one that is carrying it back to the heart where the arterial system is carrying it out to the body to the tissues so that the oxygen can get to the tissue levels. So the veins are de-oxygenated and they have that bluish color in nature.


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