QS Study


In patients with penetrating chest wounds with un-controlled intrathoracic hemorrhage, a thoracotomy may be a life-saving procedure. It is a type of surgery that is carried out on a person’s chest. After preparing the skin in the usual way, the physician makes an incision over the fourth or fifth intercostal space, extending from the lateral margin of the sternum to the anterior axillary line. Whether to make a right or left incision depends on the site of the injury. For access to the heart and aorta, the chest should be entered from the left side. It is often used during the treatment of lung cancer. Surgeons and doctors in emergency situations may use it to access the organs within the chest. The following tissues will be incised –

(a) skin, (b) subcutaneous tissue, (c) stratus anterior and pectoral muscles, (d) external intercostal muscle and anterior intercostal membrane, (e) internal intercostal muscle, (f) innermost intercostal muscle, (g) endothoracic fascia, and (h) parietal pleura.

Thoracotomy 1

Fig: Thoracotomy

Avoid the internal thoracic artery, which runs vertically downward behind the costal cartilages about a fingers breadth lateral to the margin of the sternum, and the intercostal vessels and nerve, which extend forward in the subcostal groove in the upper part of the intercostal space. It is an incision made into the chest that allows surgeons to access the throat, lungs, heart, and diaphragm.

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