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Table 3 Intrathoracic structures defined as “vital structures”

From: Chest wall thickness and depth to vital structures in paediatric patients – implications for prehospital needle decompression of tension pneumothorax

Pericardium
Aorta
SVC, IVC
Pulmonary vessels including larger intraparenchymal branches (with the smallest easily visualized on CT-scan being the segment arteries)
Thymus gland