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Mapping of Internal Mammary Vessels by Multidetector Computed Tomography for Parasternal Transthoracic Intervention Guidance

Dursun, Memduh MD; Yekeler, Ensar MD; Yilmaz, Sabri MD; Genchellac, Hakan MD; Tunaci, Mehtap MD

Journal of Computer Assisted Tomography: September-October 2005 - Volume 29 - Issue 5 - p 617-620
doi: 10.1097/01.rct.0000172673.17188.69
Thoracic and Breast Imaging: Original Article

Objective: To measure the distances between the internal mammary arteries (IMAs) and the sternum for determining a route for parasternal transthoracic interventions.

Methods: Coronal reconstructed multidetector computed tomography images of 202 patients were evaluated to measure the distances between the IMAs and sternum at 3 levels (manubrium, midsternal corpus, and distal sternal corpus). The arrangements (2 veins-single artery or single vein-single artery) were documented.

Results: The most frequently encountered arrangement (42.1%) was a single vein and single artery on both sides. Mean distances on the right and left sides were 10.2 and 10.1 cm at the manubrium, 14.5 and 14.3 cm at the midsternal corpus, and 17.9 and 17.5 cm at distal sternal corpus, respectively.

Conclusion: To be aware of the courses of the IMAs at different sternal levels is important during attempts at transthoracic intervention via a parasternal approach.

From the Department of Radiology, Istanbul University, Istanbul Faculty of Medicine, Istanbul, Turkey.

Received for publication March 25, 2005; accepted May 25, 2005.

Reprints: Memduh Dursun, Department of Radiology, Istanbul University, Istanbul Faculty of Medicine, 34390, Capa, Istanbul, Turkey (e-mail:

© 2005 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.