Anatomy Atlases(tm) : A digital library of anatomy information

Home | About | FAQ | Reviews | Search

Anatomy Atlases: Illustrated Encyclopedia of Human Anatomic Variation: Opus III: Nervous System: Sympathetic Division: Middle Cervical Ganglion

Illustrated Encyclopedia of Human Anatomic Variation: Opus III: Nervous System: Sympathetic Division

Middle Cervical Ganglion

Ronald A. Bergman, PhD
Adel K. Afifi, MD, MS
Ryosuke Miyauchi, MD

Peer Review Status: Internally Peer Reviewed

The sympathetic plexus in the region of the middle cervical ganglion may be posterior to the inferior thyroid artery or may be bifurcated, with the artery lying between the two trunks. The middle cervical ganglion may be absent, in which case the middle cardiac nerves are carried in the interganglionic chain. When there are two ganglia, the upper (usually smaller) part is called the middle cervical ganglion of Arnold (or Luschka) or the thyroid ganglion of Krause, and the larger lower part is called the middle cervical ganglion of Swan (or Krause) or the inferior cervical ganglion of Arnold (or Luschka or Rüdinger).

The middle cervical ganglion may communicate with the phrenic nerve. According to Allen (1958), in cases of retroesophageal right subclavian artery the sympathetic (middle and inferior) cardiac nerves follow the vessel in its anomalous course to reach the cardiac plexus.


Allen, F.D. (1958) An analysis of the cervicothoracic visceral branches of the vagus and the sympathetic trunk in the presence of an anomalous right subclavian artery. Anat. Rec. 132:71-80.

Cruveilhier, J. (1851) Traité d'Anatomie Descriptive, 3rd ed., G. Doin & Cie., Paris.

Ellison, J.P. and T.H. Williams. (1969) Sympathetic nerve pathways to the human heart and their variations. Am. J. Anat. 124:149-162.

Henle, J. (1868) Handbuch der Systematischen Anatomie des Menschen. von Friedrich Vieweg und Sohn, Baunschweig.

Jackson, C.M., Ed. (1933) Morris' Human Anatomy, 9th ed., P. Blakiston's Son & Co., Inc., Philadelphia.

Jamieson, R.W., Smith, D.B. and B.J. Anson. (1952) The cervical sympathetic ganglia. An anatomical study of 100 cervicothoracic dissections. Q. Bull. Northwestern University Medical School 26:219-227.

Kopsch, F. (1908) Rauber's Lehrbuch der Anatomie des Menschen. Georg Thieme, Leipzig.

Latarjet, A. (1948) Testut's Traité d'Anatomie Humain, 9th ed., G. Doin & Cie., Paris.

Monteiro, H. and A. Rodrigues. (1931) Sur le variations du nerf vertebral. Assoc. Anatomistes Comptes Rendus 26:406-419.

Schaefer, E.A., Symington, J. and T.H. Bryce., Eds. (1915) Quain's Anatomy, 11th ed., Longmans, Green, and Co., London.

Section Top | Title Page
Home | About Us | FAQ | Reviews | Contact Us | Search

Anatomy Atlases is curated by Michael P. D'Alessandro, M.D. and Ronald A. Bergman, Ph.D.

Please send us comments by filling out our Comment Form.

All contents copyright © 1995-2018 the Author(s) and Michael P. D'Alessandro, M.D. All rights reserved.

"Anatomy Atlases", the Anatomy Atlases logo, and "A digital library of anatomy information" are all Trademarks of Michael P. D'Alessandro, M.D.

Anatomy Atlases is funded in whole by Michael P. D'Alessandro, M.D. Advertising is not accepted.

Your personal information remains confidential and is not sold, leased, or given to any third party be they reliable or not.

The information contained in Anatomy Atlases is not a substitute for the medical care and advice of your physician. There may be variations in treatment that your physician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.