Although humans have lived with the same bodies for millennia, we are still exploring and uncovering new parts, processes, and functions every year.
Researchers continue to discover new organs; for example, mesentery, which was previously thought to be a fragmented series of tissues, was reclassified as a single organ in 2017. What's more, procedures to repair organs are also evolving rapidly. Just last March, doctors were able to perform groundbreaking brain surgery on a baby—while she was still in the womb.
There are 79 organs in the human body, spanning the muscular, nervous, endocrine, skeletal, cardiovascular, lymphatic, respiratory, digestive, urinary, and reproductive systems.
But not all organs are created equal. Of these, five are considered vital: the brain, heart, kidneys, liver, and lungs. While these heavy hitters keep us alive and functioning, there are plenty of organs we can live without. The appendix, spleen, reproductive organs, and colon are just a few of the many organs that, while helpful to our bodily processes, aren't necessary for survival. In 2021, a record high of 41,354 organ transplants took place in the U.S., including 24,669 kidney transplants, 9,236 liver transplants, and 3,817 heart transplants.
Stacker compiled a quiz on what 25 major organs do for your body. Read on to see what you know about human anatomy.