Esophagus

Abstract

Gross anatomy

Overview

Function

  • Passage for food and liquids between the oropharynx and stomach
    • Peristaltic contractions of the esophageal muscles assist in moving food downwards.

Vasculature

Arteries Veins Lymphatics
Cervical portion
  • Esophageal branches of inferior thyroid artery
Thoracic portion
  • Azygos and hemiazygos veins
Abdominal portion
  • Esophageal branches of left gastric arteries
  • Left gastric vein (which drains into the portal circulation)

Innervation

Microscopic anatomy

Embryology

  • Derived from the embryonic foregut
  • Fusion of lateral mesodermal ridges in the midline separates the esophagus from the trachea at 26 days' gestation

Clinical significance

last updated 09/06/2018
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