The mediastinum , German mediastinal space , is a vertically extending Gewebsraum in the chest cavity . It lies in the median plane between the two pleural cavities and extends from the diaphragm to the neck and from the spine to the breastbone (sternum). The adjacent breast fur ( pleura ) is called the mediastinal pleura ( middle layer ).
Organs of the mediastinum
All chest organs with the exception of the lungs are embedded in the loose connective tissue of the mediastinum . A distinction is made between an upper and a lower mediastinum in humans. In animals, it is divided into a mediastinum located in front of the heart ( precardial ), a section of the heart ( cardiac ) and a mediastinum located behind the heart ( postcardial ).
The upper mediastinum contains the thymus , the heart near the great vessels ( aortic arch and its outlets, pulmonary trunk , superior vena cava ), trachea , esophagus , lymph nodes ( Mediastinallymphknoten , Tracheobronchallymphknoten ), thoracic duct , phrenic nerve , the vagus nerve and recurrent laryngeal nerve .
The space between the aortic arch and the left pulmonary artery is called the aortopulmonary window by radiologists .
The lower mediastinum is in a between sternum and pericardium located forward , an average with the in-pericardial heart and a rear between the heart and thoracic spine divided. The rear includes the esophagus , the aorta , inferior vena cava , azygous vein , vena hemiazygos , thoracic duct and the vagus nerve . Often the anterior and upper mediastinum are combined as the "anterior" mediastinum.
- Mediastinal emphysema
- Mediastinum testis
- Mediastinal pendulums
- Mediastinal displacement