Q:

What color is blood before it hits oxygen?

A:

Quick Answer

According to UCSB ScienceLine, human blood is always red even before being oxygenated. It is a myth that blood is blue while it is in the veins. In reality, it is just a brighter red when it is carrying oxygen and a darker red when it is depleted of oxygen.

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Full Answer

Mental Floss elaborates on this myth, suggesting that it stems from the blue appearance of human veins as seen through skin. This is caused by the absorption of different wavelengths. Blue light tends to not penetrate as deeply into the body, and it is reflected back out to be seen by the eye, giving deep veins their distinctive blue color when seen through skin.

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Related Questions

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    Do red blood cells have nuclei?

    A:

    Mature red blood cells do not contain nuclei. However, red blood cells that are not fully formed and not fully matured do contain nuclei for a brief period of time during their development.

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    Why do red blood cells have no nucleus?

    A:

    Red blood cells have no nucleus, because most of their bulk is made up of hemoglobin, a compound that carries gases, such as oxygen and carbon dioxide. In fact, about a third of a red blood cell is dedicated to hemoglobin alone, so no room remains for a nucleus or many of the structures that other cells have.

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    What makes blood red?

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    How are red blood cells specialized?

    A:

    According to Springfield Technical Community College, the primary role red blood cells play in the body is to transport oxygen from the lungs to the various body tissues. To carry out this task, the cells are filled with a substance called hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is so important to red blood cells that its molecules comprise one-third of the cell’s volume.

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