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blood vessel that conveys blood away from the heartheart,
muscular organ that pumps blood to all parts of the body. The rhythmic beating of the heart is a ceaseless activity, lasting from before birth to the end of life. Anatomy and Function

The human heart is a pear-shaped structure about the size of a fist.
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. Except for the pulmonary artery, which carries deoxygenated blood from the heart to the lungs, arteries carry oxygenated blood from the heart to the tissues. The largest arterial trunk is the aortaaorta
, primary artery of the circulatory system in mammals, delivering oxygenated blood to all other arteries except those of the lungs. The human aorta, c.1 in. (2.54 cm) in diameter, originates at the left ventricle of the heart.
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, branches of which divide and subdivide into ever-smaller tubes, or arterioles, until they terminate as minute capillariescapillary
, microscopic blood vessel, smallest unit of the circulatory system. Capillaries form a network of tiny tubes throughout the body, connecting arterioles (smallest arteries) and venules (smallest veins).
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, the latter connecting with the veinsvein,
blood vessel that returns blood to the heart. Except for the pulmonary vein, which carries oxygenated blood from the lungs to the heart, veins carry deoxygenated blood. The oxygen-depleted blood passes from the capillaries to the venules (small veins).
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 (see circulatory systemcirculatory system,
group of organs that transport blood and the substances it carries to and from all parts of the body. The circulatory system can be considered as composed of two parts: the systemic circulation, which serves the body as a whole except for the lungs, and the
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). Other important arteries are the subclavian and brachial arteries of the shoulder and arm, the carotid arteries that lead to the head, the coronary arteries that nourish the heart itself, and the iliac and femoral arteries of the abdomen and lower extremities. The walls of the large arteries have three layers: a tough elastic outer coat, a layer of muscular tissue, and a smooth, thin inner coat. Arterial walls expand and contract with each heartbeat, pumping blood throughout the body. The pulsating movement of blood, or pulsepulse,
alternate expansion and contraction of artery walls as heart action varies blood volume within the arteries. Artery walls are elastic. Hence they become distended by increased blood volume during systole, or contraction of the heart.
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, may be felt where the large arteries lie near the body surface.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.


A vascular tube that carries blood away from the heart.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


any of the tubular thick-walled muscular vessels that convey oxygenated blood from the heart to various parts of the body
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
(1992) A quantitative study of postoperative luminal narrowing of the internal thoracic artery graft in coronary artery bypass surgery.
To our knowledge, this case represents the eighth report in the world literature of a patient with chylothorax following internal thoracic artery implantation for coronary artery bypass.[10,13,18-23] In the previous seven cases, four required thoracotomy for resolution while three responded to conservative management, and all survived.
Skeletonized internal thoracic artery harvest improves prognosis in high-risk population after coronary artery bypass surgery for good quality grafts.
At the beginning of the video--anastomosis of the left internal thoracic artery to left anterior descending artery; 1:30th minute--mini-pericardiotomy for anastomosis of the proximal right coronary artery (RCA); the 2nd minute--the RCA artery is clearly visualized during the procedure.
Angiography revealed that left internal thoracic artery (LITA) graft to left anterior descending artery (LAD) and saphenous vein grafts to posterior descending artery (PDA) branch of the right coronary artery (RCA) and second obtuse marginal (OM) branch of the circumflex artery (CX) correspondingly were patent.
The internal thoracic artery was ligated at both the ends and the intercostal arteries were electro-cauterised.
Pharmacological dilatation of the internal thoracic artery during coronary artery bypass surgery.
Weiglain (1996) reported a case wherein the right inferior thyroid artery was replaced by an artery branching off from the right internal thoracic artery and the left inferior thyroid artery was replaced by an artery, a branch of vertebral artery.
Surgeons may be reluctant and cautious about using internal thoracic artery as a site of intervention for myocardial revascularization in patients with a history of thoracic radiotherapy.
The patient underwent myocardial revascularization and anastomosis of the left internal thoracic artery to the left anterior descending artery was performed on the beating heart via median sternotomy.
The left internal thoracic artery (LITA) has long been established as the graft of choice for coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) surgery1.

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