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Yousun Koh

Neurovasculature of the dorsal neck (English)

Neurovasculature of the dorsal neck (English)

The main arterial structures of the neck are the carotid, vertebral and occipital arteries. The common carotid artery ascends through the neck bifurcating into the internal and external carotid arteries. The internal carotid artery ascends to provide anterior supply to structures of the cranial cavity while the external carotid artery branches to supply structures of the neck and face. Arising from the subclavian arteries at the root of the neck are the paired vertebral arteries which ascend through the transverse foramina of the upper six cervical vertebrae, to provide posterior supply to the cranial cavity.The primary venous channels of the neck are the internal, external and anterior jugular (not shown here) veins. Tributaries of these collecting veins largely follow a similar pattern to their fellow arteries, e.g. deep cervical and vertebral veins.Numerous cranial and peripheral nerves pass through and supply structures of the neck. The cervical plexus, located at the superior portion of the neck, gives off several branches, such as the lesser occipital and great auricular nerves to supply cutaneous and muscular innervation to many structures of the neck as well as parts of the face, shoulder region and thorax. Cervical nerves (i.e. spinal nerves C1-C3) like the suboccipital nerve and greater occipital nerve also provide innervation to structures of the head and dorsal neck.
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