Difference Between Veins and Capillaries

Edited by Diffzy | Updated on: September 05, 2022


Difference Between Veins and Capillaries Difference Between Veins and Capillaries

Why read @ Diffzy

Our articles are well-researched

We make unbiased comparisons

Our content is free to access

We are a one-stop platform for finding differences and comparisons

We compare similar terms in both tabular forms as well as in points


The human body is regarded as an intricate structure. Blood flows through all of the veins, which are linked. As a complicated machine, the human body also possesses certain grave problems. When the body endures pain, surgery, suffering, etc., these problems are there. However, the human body has its own waste-filtering mechanisms. After removing such toxins, the body becomes healthy and energetic. The basic component of the human body is blood circulation. Without this flow, a body cannot exist. Whether in people or animals, blood circulation is essential. People with anaemia, blood cancer, leukaemia, etc. are responsible for their own care. The importance of blood and cell structure to the body.

Veins and capillaries are occasionally visible through the skin. Veins are bigger and thicker. Most veins can only carry deoxygenated blood, but capillaries can carry both oxygenated and deoxygenated blood. Vein walls are thicker than capillary walls. Blood is transported to the heart by valves in veins, while capillaries lack valves. With their thin walls, capillaries transport blood and nutrients between veins and arteries. Veins and capillaries are occasionally visible through the skin. Veins are bigger and thicker. Most veins can only carry deoxygenated blood, but capillaries can carry both oxygenated and deoxygenated blood.

Veins vs Capillaries

Our bodily system is extremely intricate. When the Divine Being created us, he must have encountered immense difficulties and intricacy. According to the Bible, since God loved us so much, he gave us his appearance. Unlike plants and other simple animals, our bodies are complex because they have many parts and functions.

We cannot answer these issues, but as humans, we should be grateful that we were formed and have a role on earth. The function and importance of our veins and capillaries likely make them one of the most fascinating sections of our body.

Capillaries and veins are blood vessels. When we refer to or envisage vessels, we see something that can transport or contain anything. Consequently, blood vessels are structures that contain blood.

 Veins transport oxygen-depleted blood. It returns it to the centre. The walls of arteries are thicker than those of veins. Veins comprise three levels as well. Veins have valves as well. These valves work to allow blood to flow forward rather than backward. For the sake of completeness, the smallest veins are referred to as venues. Seventy-five percent of the blood is contained in the veins at any given moment. In contrast to the arteries, veins do not have audible pulses. Consequently, the pulse cannot be felt.

The capillary is the smallest blood vessel inside the human body. In contrast to veins, capillaries are composed of a single layer of endothelial cells. Endothelial cells serve to allow things such as water to flow through them. Additionally, capillaries function as a link between the vein and artery. Contrary to the artery, it does not include any valves. As the smallest blood vessel, the capillary stores just 5% of the blood. A pulse cannot be sensed in our capillaries.

These blood vessels must be properly maintained by refraining from smoking and excessive alcohol use. We should also check our hypertension since, if these veins burst or get clogged, we run the danger of dying instantly. Therefore, we must alter our lifestyle.

Difference Between Veins and Capillaries in Tabular Form 

Table: Veins vs Capillaries
Parameter of comparison
It is a blood vessel with a very thin wall.
It is an extremely thin-walled blood artery with a limited diameter.
It transports blood from various bodily sections to the heart.
It generates a network in all live cells throughout the body, linking arteries and veins.
There are three types of veins, including superficial veins, pulmonary veins, and deep veins.
There are three different types of capillaries: continuous, sinusoid, and fenestrated.
The three vein layers are Tunica Adventitia, Tunica Media, and Tunica Intima
In capillaries termed Tunica Intima, just one layer is present.
Blood pressure
The BP in the veins is low.
Capillary blood pressure is consistently dropping.

What are Veins?

Veins transport deoxygenated blood to the heart and are often positioned near to the skin. Veins, unlike arteries, lack a muscle layer, so they rely on valves to keep blood flowing. Veins begin as venules, which enlarge as they approach the heart to become veins of full size.

Veins are tubes found throughout the body that return blood to the heart. The classification of veins includes superficial vs deep, pulmonary versus systemic, and big versus tiny.

  • Superficial veins are those located closer to the body's surface and lack associated arteries.
  • Deep veins are located deeper within the body and are connected to arteries.
  • Perforator veins discharge superficial veins into deeper veins.
  • These are often associated with the lower extremities and feet.
  • Communicating veins are veins that connect superficial and deep veins directly.
  • These veins transport oxygenated blood from the lungs to the heart.
  • The systemic veins empty the body's tissues and transport deoxygenated blood to the heart.
  • Most veins include one-way valves, similar to a duckbill valve, to prevent blood from flowing in the other direction.

The colour of a vein as seen from the exterior of an organism is mostly controlled by the colour of venous blood, which is often dark red due to its low oxygen concentration. Veins appear blue due to a lack of oxygen in the vein. The quality of a person's skin, the amount of oxygen transported in the blood, and the size and depth of the veins might influence the hue of a vein. Veins that have been drained of blood and extracted from an organism appear gray-white.

Veins' Defining Characteristics

 Veins are the blood vessels responsible for returning deoxygenated blood to the heart. Following microcirculation, deoxygenated blood and other metabolic wastes are collected in the venules. Venules are tiny blood vessels that branch off of veins. The deoxygenated blood is drained into the veins. The venous blood pressure is lower than the arterial blood pressure. The primary force propelling blood through veins is muscular contractions. Veins include valves that prevent blood from flowing backwards.

There are three tissue layers in the vein wall: tunica adventitia, tunica media, and tunica intima. The tunica adventitia is formed of a layer of connective tissue that produces the vein's sturdy outer coating. The tunica media is made up of a thin layer of smooth muscle, whereas the tunica intima is lined with a smooth endothelium layer.

The veins drain blood into the vena cava, the biggest veins. The superior and inferior vena cava provide blood to the heart's right atrium.

The Function of Veins

 Veins transport blood from organs back to the heart. Veins are also known as "capacitance vessels" due to the fact that 60% of blood volume is held within veins. In systemic circulation, the left ventricle pumps oxygenated blood through the arteries to the body's muscles and organs, where its nutrients and gases are exchanged at the capillaries. After capillaries absorb cellular waste and carbon dioxide, blood is routed via vessels that converge to produce venules, which continue to converge to form bigger veins. The deoxygenated blood is carried by veins to the right atrium of the heart, where it is then transferred to the right ventricle and pumped to the lungs through the pulmonary arteries. In pulmonary circulation, the pulmonary veins carry oxygenated blood from the lungs to the left atrium, which empties into the left ventricle to complete the circulatory cycle.

Despite the fact that most veins return blood to the heart, there is one exception. Blood is transported across capillary beds via portal veins. Capillary beds are a network of blood vessels that connect the venules to the arterioles and allow for the exchange of substances across the blood-tissue barrier. The hepatic portal vein, for instance, transfers blood from the capillary beds of the digestive tract to the capillary beds of the liver. The blood is subsequently evacuated through the gastrointestinal system and spleen, where it is reabsorbed by the hepatic veins and returned to the heart. Due to the importance of this function in animals, injury to the hepatic portal vein can be hazardous. Blood clots in the hepatic portal vein can lead to high pressure in the portal vein and a drop in the amount of blood in the liver.

What are Capillaries?

Capillaries connect your arteries to your veins. The capillary is the smallest blood vessel type. They can be as small as 5 micrometres, which is less than one-third the width of a human hair.

The thickness of a capillary wall is merely one cell. The capillary wall is made up of endothelial cells, which let oxygen, nutrients, and waste move into and out of tissue cells.

The capillaries are the network of finely branching blood arteries that connect arterioles and veins. They are located in tissues and organs close to the metabolic cells. Given that the diameter of a capillary is between 5 and 10 m, only a single file of blood vessels may flow through it simultaneously. The capillary wall is composed of simple squamous epithelium. Therefore, a basement membrane and endothelial cells compose the wall.

In the human body, there are three distinct kinds of blood capillaries: continuous, fenestrated, and sinusoidal. Continuous capillaries are characterised by an endothelial cell layer that lines the capillary lumen. This capillary type is present in skeletal muscles, skin, testicles, and fingers. They only enable water and ions to pass across the intercellular gap. The endothelial cells of the fenestrated capillaries have holes with a diameter of 60–80 nm. They permit the passage of ions and tiny proteins via their apertures. There are fenestrated capillaries in the endocrine glands, pancreas, gut, and kidney glomeruli.

The sinusoidal capillaries are characterised by wide endothelial slits and an imperfect basement membrane. This form of blood capillary permits red blood cells, white blood cells, and serum proteins to circulate. These cells are found in the adrenal glands, bone marrow, and lymph nodes.

Capillary Characterizations

  •  They are present inside all tissues.
  • have extremely thin walls.
  • transports blood from veins to arteries
  • Both oxygenated and deoxygenated blood is transported by blood vessels.
  • Not possessing muscle tissue
  • don't have valves

Function of Capillary

The capillary wall serves a vital purpose by permitting the passage of nutrients and waste products. Larger than 3-nm molecules, such as albumin and other big proteins, undergo transcellular transport via vesicles, a process that requires them to pass through the wall-forming cells. When molecules smaller than 3 nm, such as water and gases, traverse the capillary wall through the gap between cells, paracellular transport occurs. These transport pathways allow chemicals to exchange in both directions based on osmotic gradients. As tight connections between endothelial cells limit the paracellular gap, the capillaries that are a component of the blood–brain barrier only permit transcellular transit.

In the lungs, specialised systems have evolved to handle the higher blood flow requirements of exercise. When the heart rate increases and more blood must travel through the lungs, the capillaries are recruited and dilated to accommodate the increase in blood flow. This increases blood flow while decreasing resistance.

Capillary permeability could be increased by the production of immune-influenced cytokines, anaphylatoxins, or other mediators (like leukotrienes, prostaglandins, histamine, bradykinin, etc.).

Difference Between Veins and Capillaries in Points


  • Capillaries are the blood arteries with fine branches that create a network between arterioles and venules.
  • Veins are the parts of the circulatory system that look like tubes and carry blood that doesn't have enough oxygen to the heart.

Circulatory System Blood Vessel Diameter

  • The diameter of a capillary is 8 micrometres.
  • A vein's diameter is greater than that of a capillary.

The Blood Vessel Wall

  • Capillaries: The thickness of the capillary wall is one cell.
  • Veins: The vein wall is composed of many cell layers.


  • Capillaries: Capillaries do not consist of veins.
  • Veins are composed of valves.


  • The capillary bed is a heavily branching network composed of capillaries.
  • Veins do not branch like capillaries.


  • Capillaries: Capillaries join arterioles and venules.
  • Veins are responsible for transporting blood from the venules to the heart.


  • Capillaries: Capillaries allow oxygen, nutrients, and metabolic waste to pass between the blood and extracellular fluid.
  • Veins are responsible for transporting deoxygenated blood to the heart.

Engaged in

  • Capillaries: Capillaries are engaged in microcirculation.
  • Veins are components of the systemic circulatory system.


 Capillaries and veins are two types of vessels that make up the circulatory system. Veins are composed of three types of tissue: connective tissue, smooth muscle, and simple epithelium, whereas capillaries are composed of a single cell. Capillaries get oxygenated blood and nutrients from arterioles. Through the capillary wall, nutrients and oxygen go from the blood to the extracellular fluid. Simultaneously, metabolic wastes are transported into the circulation. Through the venules, deoxygenated blood drains to the veins and is subsequently delivered to the heart. The main thing that makes capillaries and veins different is what they do in the circulatory system.


  • Bailey, Regina. “What is a Capillary Fluid Exchange?” ThoughtCo, Available here. Accessed 30 Aug. 2017.
  • “Capillary.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 28 Aug. 2017, Available here. Accessed 30 Aug. 2017.


Cite this article

Use the citation below to add this article to your bibliography:



MLA Style Citation

"Difference Between Veins and Capillaries." Diffzy.com, 2023. Mon. 20 Mar. 2023. <https://www.diffzy.com/article/difference-between-veins-and-capillaries-991>.

Edited by

Share this article