JOURNAL ARTICLE

Empirical description of bronchial and nonbronchial arteries with MDCT

Hong Yu, Shi-Yuan Liu, Hui-Min Li, Xiang-Sheng Xiao, Wei-Hua Dong
European Journal of Radiology 2010, 75 (2): 147-53
19464835

PURPOSE: We aimed to retrospectively evaluate bronchial and nonbronchial systemic arteries using multi-detector row helical computed tomographic (MDCT) angiography in patients with pulmonary disorders.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Thirty-nine patients (24 men, 15 women; mean age, 63.4 years; range, 20-82 years) with congenital and acquired pulmonary disorders of the bronchial and nonbronchial systemic arteries underwent multi-detector row helical computed tomographic angiography of the thorax using a 16-detector row scanner. Each of these patients had experienced an episode of hemoptysis. Computed tomographic angiogram data, which included maximum intensity projections, multiplanar reconstruction, and three-dimensional volume-rendered images, were used to retrospectively analyse the characteristics of the bronchial and nonbronchial systemic arteries.

RESULTS: We identified a total of 128 bronchial arteries (76 on the right side and 52 on the left) in 39 patients. We detected 42 nonbronchial systemic artery branches, including 19 internal mammary artery branches, 8 subclavian artery branches, 8 inferior phrenic artery branches, 5 intercostal artery branches, 1 thyrocervical trunk branch, and 1 celiac trunk branch. Thirty-five dilated and tortuous nonbronchial systemic arteries entered into the lung parenchyma and extended down to the lesions. Every case, except the one case of sequestration, was associated with pleural thickening where the vascular structures passed through the extrapleural fat.

CONCLUSIONS: The variations in both the bronchial artery anatomy and the location and type of the nonbronchial arteries were great. Nonbronchial arteries may be a significant source of hemoptysis. MDCT angiography can be used to detect detailed anatomical information about the origins and courses of bronchial and nonbronchial systemic arteries and their pathophysiologic features.

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