The prevalence of thyroid ima artery and its clinical significance




Thyroid ima artery, Thyroid, Thyroidectomy, Tracheostomy, Hemorrhage


Background: The thyroid ima artery (TIA) is an anatomical anomaly that commonly functions as an accessory blood supply for the isthmus and inferior aspect of the thyroid. Limited research has been performed to investigate the relative prevalence and clinical implications of the TIA in present literature.

Methods: Dissections were conducted on cadavers in the anatomy laboratory at Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine, New York (Harlem Campus), with 94 subjects examined using standard methods to identify thyroid vasculature and to determine the presence of a thyroid ima artery. Known origins of the thyroid ima artery were also examined for possible branching.  

Results: Of the 94 cadavers, only one was found to have a thyroid ima artery present, suggesting a prevalence of 1.06 percent.

Conclusions: The thyroid ima artery is significant in its influence in head and neck procedures as well as emergent airway creation. With its relative rarity, its presence is worthy of consideration as a possible hematological source for hemorrhage.

Author Biography

Christine M. Lomiguen, Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine, Erie, Pennsylvania, United States

Department of Anatomy


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