Right lymphatic duct

The right lymphatic duct, about 1.25 cm. in length, courses along the medial border of the Scalenus anterior at the root of the neck. In most cases it ends in the right subclavian vein, at its angle of junction with the right internal jugular vein, although the termination can be variable.

Its orifice is guarded by two semilunar valves, which prevent the passage of venous blood into the duct.


The right duct drains lymph fluid from:

  • the upper right section of the trunk, (right thoracic cavity, via the right bronchomediastinal trunk),
  • the right arm (via the right subclavian trunk),
  • and right side of the head and neck (via the right jugular trunk).

All other sections of the human body are drained by the thoracic duct.


The discovery of this structure has been credited to Niels Stensen.

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