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Superior Bronchial Branch of Aorta
Cardiovascular System

Superior Bronchial Branch of Aorta

Ramus bronchiales superiores aortae

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Quick Facts

Origin: Descending thoracic aorta.

Course: Along the left tracheobronchial tree.

Branches: Esophageal branch.

Supplied Structures: Trachea, right bronchus, lung parenchyma, lymph nodes, visceral pleura.

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The superior bronchial artery arises from the descending thoracic aorta.


From its origin, the superior bronchial branch travels to the posterior surface of the left main bronchus, travels along its surface following the same branching pattern as the left bronchial tree. It terminates around the level of the respiratory bronchioles.

It is important to note that bronchial vessels are a part of the systemic circulation, not the pulmonary circulation. They are not involved in the gas exchange that takes place at the alveoli between the blood and inspired air, although some distal bronchial vessels do anastomose with pulmonary vessels.


The superior branch may provide an esophageal branch that supplies the esophagus.

Supplied Structures

The superior bronchial branch provides an arterial supply to the structures of the left bronchial tree, as well as the distal trachea, adjoining lymph nodes, and visceral pleura.

Complete Anatomy

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Complete Anatomy