Skip to main content

Unfortunately we don't fully support your browser. If you have the option to, please upgrade to a newer version or use Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome, or Safari 14 or newer. If you are unable to, and need support, please send us your feedback.

Publish with us
Thyrocervical Trunk
Cardiovascular System

Thyrocervical Trunk

Truncus thyreocervicalis

Read more


The thyrocervical trunk arises from the anterior surface of the first part of the subclavian artery.


The thyrocervical trunk is a short thick vessel that ascends just medial to the scalenus anterior muscle and divides almost immediately from its origin.


The suprascapular artery arises from the thyrocervical trunk and passes inferolaterally across the scalenus anterior muscle to reach the superior scapular border.

The transverse cervical artery arises just superior to the suprascapular artery and takes a lateral course across the occipital triangle of the neck.

The inferior thyroid artery is the largest terminal branch of the thyrocervical trunk. It ascends anterior to the scalenus anterior muscle. Sometimes, the ascending cervical artery may arise directly from the thyrocervical trunk, but it usually arises from the inferior thyroid artery.

Supplied Structures

Branches from the thyrocervical trunk supply various structures of the neck and scapular region.

- The suprascapular artery supplies the supraspinatus and infraspinatus muscles and part of the sternocleidomastoid and the subclavius muscles.

- The transverse cervical artery supplies trapezius and sternocleidomastoid muscles.

- The inferior thyroid artery supplies the inferior poles of the thyroid gland, parathyroid gland, larynx, pharynx, infrahyoid muscles, longus colli, scalenus anterior, and the inferior pharyngeal constrictor muscles.

Learn more about this topic from other Elsevier products

Thyrocervical Trunk

ScienceDirect image

The thyrocervical trunk is usually near the medial border of the anterior scalene and the inferior thyroid, transverse cervical, and transverse scapular branches arise from it.

Explore on ScienceDirectopens in new tab/window

Complete Anatomy

The world's most advanced 3D anatomy platform

Complete Anatomy