NASA has discovered, and then released a report on this on Wednesday, that astronauts who might be traveling to Mars might encounter some unexpected issues. The report implies that scientists would suffer from vital blood flow issues in their upper part of the body.
Such discoveries imply major consequences for future expeditions to the Red Planet. It has been well observed for decades that spaceflight has a major impact on the human body. NASA already knows since decades ago that the low gravity makes the muscles to lose mass, and bones became substantially frail. Now, the new findings suggest an important issue with a blood vessel on the side of the neck that has the function of draining blood out of the face, brain, and neck.
The research studied 11 astronauts who lived for a medium of six months at the International Space Station (ISS). Getting to the 50th days of expeditions, seven of the astronomers participating in the study showed during ultrasound analyze that their blood had stalled or reversed flow in their left internal jugular vein.
A Dangerous Situation to be in
One of the astronauts that were tested was even identified to have developed a clot on that particular vein. Another partial clot was discovered in another person tested after they came back to Earth.
”We did not expect to see stasis and reverse flow. That is very abnormal. On Earth, you would immediately suspect a massive blockage or a tumor or something like that,” Michael Stenger, manager of the Cardiovascular and Vision Laboratory at NASA’s Johnson Space Center located in Huston, and also the study’s lead author, said.
Stenger said he is more worried about the astronomers who experienced stalled blood flow in this particular vein. If those blood cells are not moving, they start grouping and form a blood clot.
However, the discoveries don’t really endanger all plans for space travel because some specialists are confident the findings would ultimately lead to the creation of treatments.