Great auricular nerve

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Nerve: Great auricular nerve
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The nerves of the scalp, face, and side of neck. (Great auricular visible below ear.)
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Plan of the cervical plexus. (Great auricular labeled at top center.)
Latin nervus auricularis magnus
Gray's subject #210 926
From Cervical plexus (C2-C3)
Dorlands
/ Elsevier
    
n_05/12565226

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



The great auricular nerve originates from the cervical plexus, composed of branches of spinal nerves C2 and C3. It provides sensory innervation for the skin over parotid gland and mastoid process, and both surfaces of the outer ear.

Terminology

Although this nerve is frequently referred to as the "greater" auricular nerve, this is not the proper nomenclature since there is no "lesser" auricular nerve. Great refers to the distinction between it and the posterior auricular nerve, which is the less influential of the two.

Path

It the largest of the ascending branches. It arises from the second and third cervical nerves, winds around the posterior border of the Sternocleidomastoideus, and, after perforating the deep fascia, ascends upon that muscle beneath the Platysma to the parotid gland, where it divides into an anterior and a posterior branch.

Branches

  • The anterior branch (ramus anterior; facial branch) is distributed to the skin of the face over the parotid gland, and communicates in the substance of the gland with the facial nerve.

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 As such, some of the information contained herein may be outdated.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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