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Thoracic plane (mnemonic)

Dr Owen Kang and Dr Henry Knipe et al.

A handy mnemonic to remember the structures found at the level of the thoracic plane (also known as the plane of Ludwig) is:



  • R: rib 2
  • A: aortic arch
  • T: tracheal bifurcation
  • P: pulmonary trunk
  • L: ligamentum arteriosum
  • A: azygos vein drains into SVC
  • N: nerves
    • loop of recurrent laryngeal nerve
    • parasympathetic: contributions to the cardiopulmonary plexuses
    • sympathetic: branches of the cardiopulmonary splanchnic nerves
  • T: right-to-left movement of the thoracic duct
Anatomy: Thoracic

Anatomy: Thoracic

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Article information

rID: 22287
System: Chest, Vascular
Section: Mnemonics, Anatomy
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:

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