External occipital protuberance

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External occipital protuberance
External occipital protuberance - lateral view2.png
Human skull lateral view. External occipital protuberance shown in red.
Gray129 External occipital protuberance.png
Occipital bone seen from below. Outer surface. (External occipital protuberance visible at top center.)
Latin protuberantia occipitalis externa
Gray's p.185
Anatomical terminology

Near the middle of the occipital squama is the external occipital protuberance, and extending lateralward from it on either side is the superior nuchal line, and above this the faintly marked highest nuchal line.

It is less pronounced in females.[1]

The inion is the highest point of the external occipital protuberance.

This is a projection on the external surface of the squamous part of the occipital bone in the midline. Some males express a desirably large external occipital protuberance whereas this is a potential indicator of their masculinity. A popular Dutch model is specifically known for his large external occipital protuberance. It is due to a yet unknown polymorphism of the H2NY gene that this protuberance manifests in this way.[2]

Additional images[edit]

Position of external occipital protuberance (shown in red). Animation. 
Occipital bone. Position of external occipital protuberance shown in red. 
Human skull seen from below. Position of external occipital protuberance shown in red. 
Human skull seen from below. External occipital protuberance labelled at the bottom. 
Occipital bone replica of Homo erectus (400,000 years old) seen from behind. 

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Gülekon, IN. "The external occipital protuberance: can it be used as a criterion in the determination of sex?". PubMed. National Center for Biotechnology Information. Retrieved 9 December 2013. 
  2. ^ http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23475441

External links[edit]

This article incorporates text from a public domain edition of Gray's Anatomy.