ISSN ONLINE: 2558-815X
ISSN PRINT: 1584-9244
ISSN-L: 1584-9244

The sources of innervation of the aortic arch and thoracic aorta in human fetuses


Introduction. The development of angiosurgery requires the morphologists to clarify in more details the topographic anatomical peculiarities of arterial vessels, considering their morphogenesis, peculiarities of innervation, age and individual anatomical variability in different periods of human ontogenesis.
The objective of the study was to clarify the sources and peculiarities of innervation of the aortic arch and thoracic aorta in human fetuses.
Materials and methods. The study was performed on 36 preparations of human fetuses of 81.0-375.0 mm of parietal-coccygeal length using a combination of methods, such as macro-microscopic preparation, vascular injection, application staining, making of 3D reconstruction models, morphometry.
Results. The sources of innervation of the aortic arch in human fetuses are the cervical cardiac branches of the vagus nerve, the cervical cardiac nerve and the single branches of the upper three or four thoracic ganglia of the sympathetic trunks. The innervation of the thoracic aorta is performed by the branches of the thoracic aortic plexus, collateral trunk and also the branches of the paraaortic plexus, which is located between the sympathetic trunk and the thoracic aorta on both sides. From each thoracic ganglion and internodal branch of the sympathetic trunks depart 2-6 branches, some of which go to the thoracic aorta along the posterior intercostal arteries, and the other branches are connected by connecting branches forming the collateral trunk. The vagus nerve throughout the thoracic region gives branches to the thoracic aorta with the formation of the thoracic aortic plexus.
Conclusions. In human fetuses, the paraaortic plexus is found between the right and left sympathetic trunks and the thoracic aorta, in addition to the intermediate plexus or collateral trunk. In the dynamics of the fetal period of ontogenesis, a bilateral asymmetry in the structure and formation of plexuses of the thoracic aorta is observed. At the end of the human fetal period, the number of connecting branches between the nerve branches of the paraaortic plexus increases.
Keywords: thoracic aorta, aortic arc, innervation, topography, fetus, human.

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Address for correspondence:
Tatiana V. KHMARA
Bukovinian State Medical University, Chernivtsi, 58001, Ukraine
e-mail:; Phone: +38 099 751 65 50


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Stelmakh GY, Khmara TV, Lukashevych IV, Vizniuk VV, Kiiun ID, Knut RP. The sources of innervation of the aortic arch and thoracic aorta in human fetuses. Arch Balk Med Union. 2021;56(4):468-476.