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Esophagus and Stomach: Introduction

by James Pickering, PhD
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    00:01 So the oesophagus and the stomach are really important in the process of digestion.

    00:06 The oesophagus, obviously, because it carries food or bolus to the stomach from the oral cavity and then the stomach is going to continue this process of mechanical and chemical digestion.

    00:19 So in this lecture we going to start off by looking at the surface anatomy, the position of the oesophagus in the stomach and then look at the oesophagus and stomach individually. Looking at the blood supply and the anatomy of the oesophagus in the abdomen and then we going to move on to the stomach and look into the structure. Talk a little bit about the gastric ulcers, how they formed.

    00:41 And also look at the blood and nerve supply of the stomach.

    00:47 So if we start off with just nice key facts about the oesophagus. While the oesophagus is a hollow its a muscular tube and its about 25 cm long, but obviously this can vary from person to person and has a diameter of about 2cm.

    01:03 It’s a muscular tube and it carries out peristalsis and that means this contraction of the muscles, muscle fiber allows the food to pass down from the pharynx in your throat to the stomach. To do that it has to pass through the through the thorax and it runs posterior to both the trachea and the heart. So in your neck the most anterior you can feel the trachea and immediately posterior to that you have the oesophagus and then it runs directly posterior to the heart.

    01:40 It then open ups into the stomach, which is really this muscular expansion of the gastrointestinal tract. And if you remember from the surface anatomy, it is located within the epigastrium and umbilical region. Sometimes it extends across into the left hypochondrium and it stores the ingested food, the primary function of it. It also mechanically churns the ingested food into smaller fragments that increases the surface area allowing for gastric juices to carry out the chemical digestion.

    02:16 And ultimately it converts this ingested bolus of food into a semi-liquid which is known as Chyme. This is then expelled into the rest of the gastrointestinal tract initially the duodenum, part of small intestine. As we will see the stomach can be divided into numerous regions, and we'll look at these in more details: Cardia, Fundus, the Body and the Pylorus.

    02:43 So here if we look at the surface anatomy for the oesophagus and the stomach. We can see we have got our clavicles up here and we have got the the rib cage and we got the ribs and we have got the mid-line.

    02:57 And the oesophagus is pretty much runs down that mid-line towards the stomach. And to do that it has to penetrate the diaphragm which you will see in the moment.And then here we can see this stomach,tucked down to some of those ribs on on the left hand side, this kind of "J" shaped muscular sack which will then be continous with the duodenum over in this direction.

    03:19 We can see that if we super impose these kinds of cartoons of these images of these organs onto the person's torso, we have got a liver here which is shielding some of the stomach we can see we got the oesophagus that runs down into the stomach which we can see here. And the stomach is going to pass the food into the "C" shaped duodenum which is the first initial part of the small intestine. So we can see the general layout,the general position of the oesophagus and the stomach in these pictures here.


    About the Lecture

    The lecture Esophagus and Stomach: Introduction by James Pickering, PhD is from the course Abdomen.


    Included Quiz Questions

    1. 25cm
    2. 10cm
    3. 15cm
    4. 5cm
    5. 30cm
    1. It lies posterior to trachea
    2. It lies medial to the trachea
    3. It lies anterior to the trachea
    4. It lies lateral to the trachea
    5. It lies inferior to the trachea
    1. Left atrial enlargement
    2. Thyroid
    3. Thymus
    4. Right atrial enlargement
    5. Right ventricular enlargement

    Author of lecture Esophagus and Stomach: Introduction

     James Pickering, PhD

    James Pickering, PhD


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