Maxillary artery and its branches. ("Internal maxillary" is horizontal at left center.)
Plan of branches of maxillary artery.
|Precursor||aortic arch 1|
|Source||external carotid artery|
|Branches||1st part: anterior tympanic - deep auricular - middle meningeal - superior tympanic - accessory meningeal - inferior alveolar
2nd part: Posterior deep temporal artery - Pterygoid branches - masseteric - buccinator - Anterior deep temporal artery
3rd part: posterior superior alveolar - infraorbital - descending palatine - artery of the pterygoid canal - sphenopalatine
The maxillary artery supplies deep structures of the face. It branches from the external carotid artery just deep to the neck of the mandible.
The maxillary artery, the larger of the two terminal branches of the external carotid artery, arises behind the neck of the mandible, and is at first imbedded in the substance of the parotid gland; it passes forward between the ramus of the mandible and the sphenomandibular ligament, and then runs, either superficial or deep to the lateral pterygoid muscle, to the pterygopalatine fossa.
The first or mandibular portion (or bony portion) passes horizontally forward, between the neck of the mandible and the sphenomandibular ligament, where it lies parallel to and a little below the auriculotemporal nerve; it crosses the inferior alveolar nerve, and runs along the lower border of the lateral pterygoid muscle.
- Deep auricular artery
- Anterior tympanic artery
- Middle meningeal artery
- Inferior alveolar artery which gives off its mylohyoid branch just prior to entering the mandibular foramen
- Accessory meningeal artery
The second or pterygoid portion (or muscular portion) runs obliquely forward and upward under cover of the ramus of the mandible and insertion of the temporalis, on the superficial (very frequently on the deep) surface of the lateral pterygoid muscle; it then passes between the two heads of origin of this muscle and enters the fossa.
- Sphenopalatine artery (Nasopalatine artery is the terminal branch of the Maxillary artery)
- Descending palatine artery (Greater palatine artery and lesser palatine artery)
- Infraorbital artery
- Posterior superior alveolar artery
- Artery of pterygoid canal
- Pharyngeal artery
- Middle superior alveolar artery (a branch of the infraorbital artery)
- Anterior superior alveolar arteries (a branch of the infraorbital artery)
- Formerly, the term "external maxillary artery" was used to describe what is now known as the facial artery (per Terminologia anatomica.) Currently, the term "external maxillary artery" is less commonly used, and the terms "internal maxillary artery" and "maxillary artery" are equivalent.