Anterior junction line
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The anterior junction (or junctional) line is a feature of frontal chest radiographs and chest CTs. It is a result of the parietal and visceral pleura meeting anteromedially. It normally contains a small amount of fat in between but can form a stripe of variable thickness if there is a lot of fat present or by the presence of the thymus in young patients 1.
Anterior mediastinal masses can cause obliteration of the anterior junction line 3.
- seen on ~40% (range 25-57%) of frontal chest x-rays 1
- oblique course crossing the upper two-thirds of the sternum from the upper right to lower left 1,2 and does not extend above the manubriosternal joint 3
- seen as a thin, dense line separating the two lungs in the anterosuperior portion of the chest 2
- 1. Gibbs JM, Chandrasekhar CA, Ferguson EC et-al. Lines and stripes: where did they go?--From conventional radiography to CT. Radiographics. 27 (1): 33-48. doi:10.1148/rg.271065073 - Pubmed citation
- 2. Marano R, Liguori C, Savino G et-al. Cardiac silhouette findings and mediastinal lines and stripes: radiograph and CT scan correlation. Chest. 01;139 (5): 1186-96. doi:10.1378/chest.10-0660 - Pubmed citation
- 3.Whitten CR, Khan S, Munneke GJ et-al. A diagnostic approach to mediastinal abnormalities. Radiographics. 2007;27 (3): 657-71. Radiographics (full text) - doi:10.1148/rg.273065136 - Pubmed citation
- 4. Zylak C, Standen J, Barnes G, Zylak C. Pneumomediastinum Revisited. Radiographics. 2000;20(4):1043-57. doi:10.1148/radiographics.20.4.g00jl131043 - Pubmed