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Musculophrenic Artery
Cardiovascular System

Musculophrenic Artery

Arteria musculophrenica

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Origin

The musculophrenic artery is one of the two terminal branches of the internal thoracic artery, the other being the superior epigastric artery.

Course

The musculophrenic artery originates at the level of the sixth intercostal space. It passes inferolaterally, behind the seventh, eighth, and ninth costal cartilages, traverses the diaphragm to end near the last intercostal space.

Branches

As the musculophrenic artery it passes the seventh, eighth and ninth intercostal spaces, it gives off arterial branches corresponding to the anterior intercostal arteries of the upper intercostal spaces.

Supplied Structures

The musculophrenic artery supplies the muscles of the intercostal space, abdominal wall, diaphragm, and lower part of the pericardium.

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Artery

ScienceDirect image

When the artery is occluded blood is forced through the collateral vessels, drastically increasing fluid shear stress and triggering an inflammatory response which drives vessel remodeling.

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