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Pericardiacophrenic Artery
Cardiovascular System

Pericardiacophrenic Artery

Arteria pericardiacophrenica

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Quick Facts

Origin: Internal thoracic artery.

Course: Inferiorly through the middle mediastinum.

Branches: None.

Supplied Structures: Pericardium, respiratory diaphragm, and mediastinal part of parietal pleura.

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Origin

The pericardiacophrenic artery arises from the internal thoracic artery at the level of the first costal cartilage.

Course

From its origin, the pericardiacophrenic artery descends through the middle mediastinum. It travels anterior to the lung roots, then between the pleura and the lateral surface of the pericardium. It extends to the respiratory diaphragm, where it anastomoses with the superior phrenic and musculophrenic arteries.

Along most of its course, the pericardiacophrenic artery is accompanied by the phrenic nerve and pericardiacophrenic vein.

Branches

There are no named branches.

Supplied Structures

The pericardiacophrenic artery supplies the pericardium, respiratory diaphragm, and mediastinal part of parietal pleura.

Learn more about this topic from other Elsevier products

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.

Explore on ScienceDirect(opens in new tab/window)

Complete Anatomy

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