Pericardium

Anatomy of the pericardiumThe main anatomical features of the pericardium (pericardial sac)
~ 2 min

The pericardium (pericardium) is the cavity in the mediastinum, which contains the heart.

Pericardium (pericardium)
Pericardium (pericardium)
Pericardium (pericardium)
Pericardium (pericardium)

It separates the heart from neighboring organs.

It passes into the tunica externa of large vessels (aorta, pulmonary trunk, superior and inferior venae cavae).

The pericardium consists of two connective tissue layers:

  1. The external fibrous layer (pericardium fibrosum)

    External fibrous layer (pericardium fibrosum)
    External fibrous layer (pericardium fibrosum)
  2. The internal serous layer (pericardium serosum)

The internal layer consists of two laminae:

– the visceral lamina (lamina visceralis), also called the epicardium, which covers the heart directly

Visceral lamina (lamina visceralis)
Visceral lamina (lamina visceralis)
Visceral lamina (lamina visceralis)
Visceral lamina (lamina visceralis)
Visceral lamina (lamina visceralis)
Visceral lamina (lamina visceralis)

– the parietal lamina (lamina parietalis), which lines the fibrous layer of the pericardium from the inside

Between the visceral and parietal laminae, there is a pericardial cavity (cavitas pericardialis), which contains a small amount of serous fluid. In the area of the base of large vessels, the laminae of the serous pericardium merge together.

Pericardial cavity (cavitas pericardialis)
Pericardial cavity (cavitas pericardialis)

The pericardial cavity has the following sinuses:

  1. The transverse pericardial sinus (sinus transversus pericardii), which is bounded by the aorta, pulmonary trunk, superior vena cava, and right atrium

    Transverse pericardial sinus (sinus transversus pericardii)
    Transverse pericardial sinus (sinus transversus pericardii)
    Transverse pericardial sinus (sinus transversus pericardii)
    Transverse pericardial sinus (sinus transversus pericardii)
  2. The oblique pericardial sinus (sinus obliquus pericardii), which is bounded by the left pulmonary veins, inferior vena cava, and left atrium.

Oblique pericardial sinus (sinus obliquus pericardii)
Oblique pericardial sinus (sinus obliquus pericardii)

The pericardium is supplied with blood by:

  1. the branches of the thoracic aorta (rr. pericardiaci)

    Branches of the thoracic aorta (rr. pericardiaci)
    Branches of the thoracic aorta (rr. pericardiaci)
  2. the pericardiaocophrenic artery (a.pericardiacophrenica)

    Pericardiaocophrenic artery (a.pericardiacophrenica)
    Pericardiaocophrenic artery (a.pericardiacophrenica)
  3. the branches of the pericardial arteries (rr. pericardiaci)

Venous outflow occurs through:

  1. the pericardiacophrenic veins (vv.pericardiacophrenicae)

  2. the pericardial veins (vv. pericardiaci)

  3. the brachiocephalic vein (v. brachiocephalica)

    Brachiocephalic vein (v. brachiocephalica)
    Brachiocephalic vein (v. brachiocephalica)
    Brachiocephalic vein (v. brachiocephalica)
    Brachiocephalic vein (v. brachiocephalica)
  4. the azygos vein (v.azygos)

    Azygos vein (v.azygos)
    Azygos vein (v.azygos)
    Azygos vein (v.azygos)
    Azygos vein (v.azygos)
  5. the hemi-azygos vein (v. hemiazygos)

    Hemi-azygos vein (v. hemiazygos)
    Hemi-azygos vein (v. hemiazygos)
    Hemi-azygos vein (v. hemiazygos)
    Hemi-azygos vein (v. hemiazygos)
  6. the superior vena cava (v. cava superior)

Superior vena cava (v. cava superior)
Superior vena cava (v. cava superior)
Superior vena cava (v. cava superior)
Superior vena cava (v. cava superior)

The lymph outflow from the pericardium is carried out to:

  1. lateral pericardial nodes (nodi pericardiaci lateralis)

  2. prepericardial nodes (nodi prepericardiales)

  3. the anterior and posterior mediastinal lymph nodes (nodi mediastinales anteriores et posteriores)

The pericardium is innervated by:

  1. branches of the phrenic nerve (rr. nervus phrenicus)

  2. branches of the vagus nerve (rr. nervus vagus)

  3. the cervical and pectoral branches of cardiac nerves (rr. cervicalis et pectoralis)

Dictionary

Anatomy of the pericardium

Pericardium
pericardium
Fibrous pericardium
pericardium fibrosum
Serous pericardium
pericardium serosum
Visceral lamina
lamina visceralis
Parietal lamina
lamina parietalis
Pericardial cavity
cavitas pericardialis
Transverse pericardial sinus
sinus transversus pericardii
Oblique pericardial sinus
sinus obliquus pericardii
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