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|Brain: Third ventricle|
Scheme showing relations of the ventricles to the surface of the brain.
|Latin||ventriculus tertius cerebri|
The third ventricle (ventriculus tertius) is one of four connected fluid-filled cavities comprising the ventricular system within the human brain. It is a median cleft in the diencephalon between the two thalami, and is filled with cerebrospinal fluid (CSF).
The third ventricle, similarly to other parts of the ventricular system of the brain, develop from the central canal of the neural tube. Specifically, the third ventricle originates from the portion of the tube that is present in the developing prosencephalon, and subsequently in the developing diencephalon.
It is bounded by the thalamus and hypothalamus on both the left and right sides. The lamina terminalis forms the anterior wall of the third ventricle. The floor of the third ventricle can be opened between the mamillary bodies and the pituitary gland, this is called an endoscopic third ventriculostomy.
There are two protrusions on the anterior aspect of the third ventricle:
- the supra-optic recess (above the optic chiasma)
- the infundibular recess (above the pituitary stalk).
Additionally, there are two protrusions on the posterior aspect, above the cerebral aqueduct:
- the suprapineal recess (above the pineal gland)
- the pineal recess (protruding into the stalk of the pineal gland)
In casts of the ventricular system, a small 'hole' may be seen in the body of the third ventricle. This is formed where the two thalami are joined together at the interthalamic adhesion (not seen in all people).
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