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The Location, Size, and Shape of the Heart

The heart is located underneath the image descriptionsternum in a thoracic compartment called the image descriptionmediastinum, which occupies the space between the lungs.

Unlabelled image of the anterior view of the sternum and ribs.
Lablled image of the sternum.
Anterior view of the mediastinum.
The sternum and mediastinum.
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  • It is approximately the size of a man’s fist (230-350 grams) and is shaped like an inverted cone.
  • About two thirds of the heart’s mass is located to the left of the body’s midline.
  • The narrow end of the heart, which is called the image descriptionapex, is directed downward and to the left.
Anterior view of the location of the heart in relation to the diaphragm.
Anterior view of the apex of the heart.
The apex of the heart.
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  • It is located at the approximate level of the fifth or sixth rib, just above the arch of the image descriptiondiaphragm.
Anterior view of the location of the heart in relation to the diaphragm.
Anterior view of the diaphragm.
The location of the heart in relation to the diaphragm.
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  • The broad end of the heart is called the image descriptionbase and gives rise to the major blood vessels.
Anterior view of the location of the heart in relation to the diaphragm.
Anterior view of the base of the heart.
The base of the heart.
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  • It is directed upward and to the right and lies at the approximate level of the second rib.

Test yourself:

Location and Orientation of Heart Quiz