Right main bronchus
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The trachea bifurcates into the right and left main bronchi at the level of the carina, supplying air to the right and left lungs respectively. Each main or primary bronchus enters the hilum of its lung and gives rise to secondary lobar bronchi, which further divide into tertiary segmental bronchi supplying the bronchopulmonary segment.
The right main bronchus is wider, shorter and courses more vertically (25 degrees to the median plane) 3 when compared to the left main bronchus 1,2. It is approximately 2.5 cm long and 1.2 cm wide. 3 It reaches the root of the right lung at the level of T5, lying inferolateral and posterior to the right pulmonary artery 1.
It gives rise to three lobar bronchi, initially bifurcating into right upper lobe bronchus and bronchus intermedius 1. Bronchus intermedius further divides into right middle lobe and lower lobe bronchi 1.
At right pulmonary hilum:
superiorly: arch of azygos vein
inferiorly: right pulmonary veins
anteriorly: right pulmonary artery (pulmonary veins anterior to pulmonary arteries)
posteriorly: esophagus (azygos vein posterior to esophagus)
The right main bronchus is supplied by a single right bronchial artery 2. It arises from one of the following origins:
proximal part of one of the upper posterior intercostal arteries (commonly right third posterior intercostal artery)
a common trunk with the left superior bronchial artery
the descending aorta
The right main bronchus drains into the right bronchial vein which drains into the azygos vein 4.
- 1. Applied Radiological Anatomy. Cambridge University Press. ISBN:0521766664. Read it at Google Books - Find it at Amazon
- 2. Dalley AF, Agur AM. Clinically Oriented Anatomy. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. ISBN:1605476528. Read it at Google Books - Find it at Amazon
- 3. Stephanie Ryan, Michelle McNicholas, Stephen J. Eustace. Anatomy for Diagnostic Imaging. (2011) Page 123. ISBN: 9780702029714 - Google Books
- 4. Chummy S. Sinnatamby. Last's Anatomy. (2011) ISBN: 9780702033940 - Google Books