AortaThis is a left lateral view of the heart in place within the thoracic cavity. The heart is being pulled ventrally by a blunt probe and the lungs have been removed so that you can see the aorta.

The aorta exits the left ventricle (exit point is obscured by the overlying pulmonary trunk, outlined in dashed orange line), and forms the aortic arch as it turns to project caudally (outlined in dashed yellow line).  The aorta remains at the dorsal midline of the thoracic and abdominal cavities.

The aorta carries oxygenated blood under high pressure as it leaves the left ventricle of the heart.  Three main arteries leave the aortic arch to supply blood to the upper (more rostral) body, and blood flows caudally (orange arrow) in the aorta to supply the lower (more caudal) body.


Next: Pig heart cross section

Back to: The circulatory system