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Paul Kim

Arteries of the head: External carotid artery (Latin)

Arteries of the head: External carotid artery (Latin)

After bifurcating from the a. carotis communis, the a. carotis externa courses superiorly along the neck (collum), giving branches to supply the muscles, viscera and skin of the head (caput), neck (collum) and face (regio facialis). There are eight major branches emerging directly from the a. carotis externa: the a. thyroidea superior, a. pharyngea ascendens, a. lingualis, a. facialis, a. occipitalis and a. auricularis posterior, as well as two terminal branches, the a. maxillaris and a. temporalis superficialis. The superior image shows the three parts of the a. maxillaris and its branches, which supply many structures of the face (facies), ear (auricula), skull (cranium), meninges, oral cavity (cavitas oris) and oropharynx (pars oralis pharyngis).
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