In most cases, arteries are the vessels transporting oxygenated blood to various organs. However, the purpose of the pulmonary artery is to carry deoxygenated blood to the lungs for purification. Blood that is lacking oxygen passes into the right ventricle of the heart from the right atrium and moves into the pulmonary artery. From there, it is passed into the lung capillaries, where it absorbs inhaled oxygen. The pulmonary vein then distributes the oxygenated blood to the left atrium and ventricle, which circulate it through the body.
Up from the right ventricle is the pulmonary trunk, a termination point of the pulmonary artery, which branches into the right and left arteries. The right artery comes from a section of the ascending aorta and is the larger of the arterial pair. It passes across the upper chest to the root of the right lung. The shorter left artery passes through the pericardium, the sac around the heart, to the root of the left lung.
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