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Diaphragm: Structures (Nursing)

by Rhonda Lawes

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    00:00 Now, did you know that your diaphragm is attached to some bony structures? Okay, well it is and based on what you already know about the body, take a look at this drawing and see if you can guess which structures this muscle is attached to. Okay, anteriorly it's attached to the xiphoid process. That's a little piece right on the bottom of your sternum. So, anteriorly it's attached to your xiphoid process and the costal margin. Laterally, it's attached to the 11th and 12th ribs. Posteriorly, it's attached to the lumbar vertebra. So think about those 3 spots that we have it connected; anteriorly, laterally, and posteriorly. Those are the bony structures that your diaphragm is attached to. I kind of think that the diaphragm is like this super cool functioning tent and these are the pools that help keep that structure tent-like. Okay, now have you ever thought about anything going through your diaphragm? Yeah, you've got some key structures and we've got them outlined here for you just to give you a frame of reference.

    01:09 Look at where the inferior vena cava is. Look at the impression for the liver. Remember the liver is on the right side and what is mostly on the left side is an organ. Right? You see the impression for the stomach. Now also locate where the aorta is in reference to the diaphragm.

    01:28 Okay, so I want you to know the inferior vena cava, you see the spot where the liver is tucked under, you see the spot where the stomach lies, now go a little higher and look in the middle.

    01:38 Look at the central tendon. Also note the esophagus. Okay, now there are some special things like the right crease, the left crease, those are not so important to our discussion today.

    01:50 But I just want you to get the idea that "Hey these things travel through the diaphragm, the inferior vena cava, the esophagus, the aorta." That gives you a frame of reference for where the anatomy is working together. Okay, now this one is labeled topography of the lungs, but let me give you the layout here. Start at the top. When you know your anatomy, we have the thyroid gland and the trachea. Remember the trachea bifurcates and it splits into both of the bronchi that head into the lungs. Now you see where the aorta is. There is a xiphoid process and there is the right dome of the diaphragm. Now what's tucked under the right dome of the diaphragm? Right. The liver. Now on the right near the liver is you're going to see the gallbladder. Now on the other side, we still got the aorta in the middle where it's supposed to be. You'll see the left dome of the diaphragm and the stomach tucked underneath there. We just want to give you 1 picture that kind of laid these all out if we're looking at a top down view of the patient. So think of the diaphragm as a divider. Above it is the thorax with the lungs and heart as the main organs. Below it is the liver, the spleen, the transverse colon, the stomach, pancreas, adrenal glands, and kidneys and they are right underneath the diaphragm.

    03:12 So above it, just your lungs and your heart. Below it, you've got all the contents of your gut.


    About the Lecture

    The lecture Diaphragm: Structures (Nursing) by Rhonda Lawes is from the course Review: Anatomy and Physiology of the Respiratory System (Nursing).


    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Xiphoid process
    2. Costal margin
    3. 11th and 12th ribs
    4. Lumbar vertebrae
    5. Liver
    1. Liver
    2. Gall bladder
    3. Stomach
    4. Aorta
    5. Spleen

    Author of lecture Diaphragm: Structures (Nursing)

     Rhonda Lawes

    Rhonda Lawes


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