Pertaining to renal physiology:

The vasa recta are peritubular capillaries in the kidney that branch from the efferent arterioles leaving each glomerulus in the vertebrate kidney. They dip into the medulla and then go back up to the cortex, forming hairpin loops and empty into veins at the corticomedullary junction.

In more lay terms, they are small, thin walled blood vessels that are wrapped around the Loops of Henle in a nephron unit of your kidney. Particles and water both pass out of and into the Loop of Henle from the vasa recta as your kidneys work and filter solutes and electrolytes. They participate in determining how concentrated your urine will be and helping to maintain your body fluids’ osmotic pressure indirectly.

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