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Lateral View of the Left Infratemporal Fossa

Surgical Correlation

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Lateral view of the left infratemporal fossa. The zygomatic arch and masseter muscle have been removed, and the temporalis muscle sectioned, to expose the infratemporal fossa. The maxillary artery lies within the infratemporal fossa and courses lateral to the lateral pterygoid muscle and deep to the mandible. The lateral pterygoid muscle originates from the infratemporal surface of the greater wing of the sphenoid and lateral surface of the lateral pterygoid plate and inserts on the condyloid process of the mandible. Superficially, the superficial temporal artery courses over the root of the zygomatic process of the temporal bone (in company with the auriculotemporal nerve, a branch of the mandibular nerve) anterior to the external auditory canal and subsequently over the temporalis muscle. Deep temporal arteries supply the temporalis muscle, as do temporal branches of the mandibular nerve. (Image courtesy of AL Rhoton, Jr.)

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