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Coronary Arteries

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Coronary Arteries
The Heart and Coronary Arteries

The Heart and Coronary Arteries

Patrick J. Lynch, medical illustrator: Licenses

Coronary Arteries

Arteries are vessels that carry blood away from the heart. The coronary arteries are the first blood vessels that branch off from the ascending aorta. The aorta is the largest artery in the body. It transports and distributes oxygen rich blood to all arteries. The coronary arteries extend from the aorta to the heart walls supplying blood to the atria, ventricles, and septum of the heart.

Function of the Coronary Arteries

The coronary arteries supply oxygenated and nutrient filled blood to the heart muscle. There are two main coronary arteries: right coronary artery and left coronary artery. Other arteries diverge from these two main arteries and extend to the bottom portion of the heart.

Coronary Arteries: Branches

Some of the arteries that extend from the main coronary arteries include:
  • Right Coronary Artery - Supplies oxygenated blood to the walls of the ventricles and the right atrium.

    • Posterior Descending Artery - Supplies oxygenated blood to the inferior wall of the left ventricle and the inferior portion of the septum.
  • Left Main Coronary Artery - Directs oxygenated blood to the left anterior descending artery and the left circumflex.

    • Left Anterior Descending Artery - Supplies oxygenated blood to the anterior portion of the septum as well as to the walls of the ventricles and the left atrium (front region of the heart).

    • Left Circumflex Artery - Supplies oxygenated blood to the walls of the ventricles and the left atrium (back region of the heart).
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