Maxillary artery

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Artery: Maxillary artery
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Plan of branches of maxillary artery. ("Internal maxillary" is horizonal at left center.)
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Plan of branches of maxillary artery.
Latin arteria maxillaris
Gray's subject #144 559
Source external carotid artery   
Branches 1st part: anterior tympanic - deep auricular - middle meningeal - superior tympanic - accessory meningeal - inferior alveolar - lingual
2nd part: masseteric - buccinator - posterior superior alveolar
3rd part: infraorbital - descending palatine - artery of the pterygoid canal - sphenopalatine
Vein maxillary veins
Precursor aortic arch 1
Dorlands
/ Elsevier
    
a_61/12154985

Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]



The maxillary artery (or internal maxillary artery in older texts) is an artery that supplies deep structures of the face.

Structure

Superficial dissection of the right side of the neck, showing the carotid and subclavian arteries. Origin of maxillary artery is labeled.

The maxillary artery, the larger of the two terminal branches of the external carotid artery, arises behind the neck of the mandible, and is at first imbedded in the substance of the parotid gland; it passes forward between the ramus of the mandible and the sphenomandibular ligament, and then runs, either superficial or deep to the lateral pterygoid muscle, to the pterygopalatine fossa.

It supplies the deep structures of the face, and may be divided into mandibular, pterygoid, and pterygopalatine portions.

First portion

The first or mandibular portion passes horizontally forward, between the ramus of the mandible and the sphenomandibular ligament, where it lies parallel to and a little below the auriculotemporal nerve; it crosses the inferior alveolar nerve, and runs along the lower border of the lateral pterygoid muscle.

Branches include:

Second portion

The second or pterygoid portion runs obliquely forward and upward under cover of the ramus of the mandible and insertion of the temporalis, on the superficial (very frequently on the deep) surface of the lateral pterygoid muscle; it then passes between the two heads of origin of this muscle and enters the fossa.

Branches include:

Third portion

The third or pterygopalatine portion lies in the pterygopalatine fossa in relation with the pterygopalatine ganglion.

Branches include:

Nomenclature

  • Formerly, the term "external maxillary artery" was used to describe what is now known as the facial artery (per Terminologia anatomica.) Currently, the term "external maxillary artery" is less commonly used, and the terms "internal maxillary artery" and "maxillary artery" are equivalent.

Additional images

External links

This article was originally based on an entry from a public domain edition of Gray's Anatomy. As such, some of the information contained herein may be outdated. Please edit the article if this is the case, and feel free to remove this notice when it is no longer relevant.


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