Blood Supply – Thoracic Diaphragm

by Craig Canby, PhD

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    00:01 Before we take a look at our next slide on the arterial supply of the diaphragm, there’s a key take-home message here. There are several arteries that supply the diaphragm and each one of these arteries will have, as a part of its naming system, phrenic. Any time you see the word phrenic, you’re gonna associate that with the diaphragm. So, let’s take a look at the next slide.

    00:30 The first one here that we see in bold is the musculophrenic. So, there is the suffix phrenic. So, if there’s phrenic in its name, it’s going to the diaphragm in part. So, if we take a look at where that is, here’s our internal thoracic artery. We also have one over here. But, what's follow it here is that would be the right internal thoracic artery.

    00:52 And right at this location, it branches, it bifurcates. And there's one that courses out laterally, is referred to as the musculophrenic. So, there will be phrenic branches to help supply the diaphragm.

    01:08 The next one in this list that is now in bold is the pericardicophrenic artery. This is also a branch of the internal thoracic artery. And again, phrenic is in its name. Here’s the internal thoracic artery coming downward here. And then here’s this branch, this small branch that courses down along the lateral margin of the fibrous pericardium, joins the phrenic nerve and then supplies branches to the diaphragm. This is the pericardicophrenic artery helping to supply the pericardium here and then it will terminate in the diaphragm.

    01:53 We also have superior phrenic arteries. Do not have a figure to highlight or illustrate those for you, but these are the last branches of the thoracic aorta before it passes through the aortic hiatus to become the abdominal aorta. But, again, there is phrenic in the name.

    02:16 And then the last set of arteries would be our inferior phrenic arteries. These are the first branches of the abdominal aorta. And we can highlight those for you in this illustration.

    02:27 Here’s the right one and then here is the left one. So, they’ll help to supply the inferior surface of the diaphragm. Again, each one has phrenic in the name.

    02:39 Venous drainage is a little bit different, but again, it does kind of share some similar nomenclature here. But, any of the veins draining the diaphragm will have phrenic in their name.

    02:53 So, we’ll have musculophrenic. And so, we see the musculophrenic vein here in blue helping to drain the diaphragm. Here we would have, following the pericardicophrenic artery, we would have its vein. And we see a portion of the vein coming down here. We kind of lose it as we get closer to the pericardium in the diaphragm. And then we have inferior phrenic veins. See a couple of them here joining together and then that common inferior phrenic vein empties into the inferior vena cava. So, again, phrenic in the name of veins draining the diaphragm.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Blood Supply – Thoracic Diaphragm by Craig Canby, PhD is from the course Abdominal Wall.

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Internal thoracic artery
    2. External carotid artery
    3. External thoracic artery
    4. Internal carotid artery
    5. Musculophrenic artery
    1. Superior phrenic arteries
    2. Musculophrenic arteries
    3. Right phrenic artery
    4. Left phrenic artery
    5. Cutaneous arteries

    Author of lecture Blood Supply – Thoracic Diaphragm

     Craig Canby, PhD

    Craig Canby, PhD

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