Definitions for aortic arch
Random House Webster's College Dictionary
one member of a series of paired curved blood vessels that arise in the embryo from the ventral aorta, pass around the pharynx through the branchial arches, and join with the dorsal aorta to form the great vessels of the head and neck.
Origin of aortic arch:
the part of the aorta that arches and turns downward
The arch of the aorta or the transverse aortic arch is the part of the aorta that begins at the level of the upper border of the second sternocostal articulation of the right side, and runs at first upward, backward, and to the left in front of the trachea; it is then directed backward on the left side of the trachea and finally passes downward on the left side of the body of the fourth thoracic vertebra, at the lower border of which it becomes continuous with the descending aorta. It thus forms two curvatures: one with its convexity upward, the other with its convexity forward and to the left. Its upper border is usually about 2.5 cm. below the superior border to the manubrium sterni. Coming out of the heart, the thoracic aorta has a maximum dimension of 4 cm at the root. By the time it becomes the ascending aorta, the diameter should be < 35-38 mm, and 30 mm at the arch. The descending aorta’s diameter shouldn’t exceed 25 mm. The arch of the Aorta lies within the mediastinum.
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