Morphological expression of the pig coronary sinus and its tributaries: A comparative analysis with the human heart

Fabián A. Gómez, Luis E. Ballesteros, L. S. Cortés

Research output: Articles / NotesScientific Articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The objective of this study was to determine the morphological expression of the coronary sinus and its tributary branches in pigs. This descriptive cross-over study evaluated continuous variables with t test, and discrete variables with the Pearson Χ square test. A level of significance p <0.05 was used. The coronary sinus (CS) and its tributaries were perfused with polyester resin (Palatal 85%, Styrene 15%), and then the hearts were subjected to KOH infusion to release subepicardal fat. The shape, trajectory and morphometry of the CS and its tributary veins were assessed. The CS was 26.9 ± 5.69 mm in length, with a proximal caliber of 10.8 ± 2.43 mm. It was cylindrical in shape in 69% of cases. The left marginal had a distal caliber of 2.6 ± 0.75 mm. The distal caliber of the middle cardiac vein (MCV) was 3.7 ± 1.04 mm. An anastomosis between the venous branches was observed in 63% of hearts. The caliber of the minor cardiac vein and the left azygous vein was 1.67 ± 0.49 mm and 8.47 ± 2.07, mm respectively. The distal caliber of the right marginal vein was 1.54 ± 0.28 mm. Myocardial bridges over the MCV were found in 10 cases (8%). A greater frequency of anastomoses was observed at the level of the heart apex between the MCV and the great cardiac vein than described in human studies. Because human and swine hearts exhibit similarity in the pattern of the CS and its tributaries, this animal model is suitable for performing procedural and hemodynamic applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)139-144
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Anatomy
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Coronary sinus
  • Middle cardiac vein
  • Myocardial bridge
  • Pig


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