Occurrence of Stellate Ganglion: A Fetal Study
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Introduction : The stellate ganglion also called as cervicothoracic ganglion, which is collection of sympathetic nerves .The ganglion lies anterior to the neck of the 1st rib.The dimensions of ganglion is about 2.5 cm in its length x1 cm in width x 0.5 cm about thickness. It might reach to anterior part of horizontal process of C7 vertebrae. The longus coli muscle is located anterolaterally ,scalene muscle lies medial to the stellate ganglion.A suprapleural membrane structurally separates the ganglion from the caudal side of the cervical pleura. The trachea, oesophagus as well as the vertebral column lies medial to stellate ganglion.
Aim : To identify stellate ganglion,its position in relation to the vertebrae .To note the size of stellate ganglion and its histology.
Materials and method: The present work was carried on 50 aborted formalin preserved human fetus specimens ranged from 11th -28th week of gestation in Department of Anatomy, GMCH , Chandigarh received in regard to autopsy. The fetuses were grouped into four age groups on the basis of gestation.Group A (11-15 weeks),Group B(15+_20 weeks),Group C(20+_25 weeks) and Group D (25 weeks onwards). The stellate ganglion was observed and its position , size was noted.
Result: Among 50 fetuses,the stellate ganglion also called as cervicothoracic ganglion were present in every age group from 11 weeks to 28 weeks of gestational age . The stellate ganglion was accounted for 64% in the fetus cervical sympathetic chains.The position of stellate ganglion at the level of C7-T1 was most common and constant.
Conclusion: The Stellate ganglia aggregation produce a complete sympathectomy to structures of head & neck region.The detailed knowledge of occurrence of stellate ganglion, its position in different gestational age groups of fetus would be guide for embryologist ,anatomist ,surgeons.
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