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Lingual Artery
Cardiovascular System

Lingual Artery

Arteria lingualis

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Quick Facts

Origin: External carotid artery.

Course: Medially between the hyoglossus muscle and the middle constrictor muscle of the pharynx, then ascends between the genioglossus muscle and longitudinal muscle of the tongue.

Branches: Sublingual and deep lingual arteries, suprahyoid and dorsal lingual branches.

Supplied Structures: Tongue and floor of mouth.

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Origin

The lingual artery arises from the anteromedial aspect of the external carotid artery. This occurs opposite the tip of the greater cornu of the hyoid bone, between the superior thyroid and facial arteries.

Course

The lingual artery may be divided into thirds due to its relationship with the hyoglossus muscle. The first part of the lingual artery courses medially within the carotid triangle of the neck. It ascends slightly, then descends to the level of the hyoid bone, thus forming a loop that is crossed b the hypoglossal nerve.

The second part of the lingual artery courses along the superior border of the hyoid bone passing between the hyoglossus muscle and middle constrictor muscle of the pharynx. It crosses the ligament of the stylohyoid muscle and is accompanied by the lingual vein.

The third part of the lingual artery is called the deep lingual artery. At the anterior border of the hyoglossus muscle, it ascends between the genioglossus muscle medially and the inferior longitudinal muscle of the tongue laterally. It passes forwards near the lingual surface adjacent to the frenulum. Here it is accompanied by the lingual nerve.

Branches

The lingual artery has several named branches, including the dorsal lingual, sublingual, and deep lingual branches. Additionally, the branches of the lingual artery form a rich anastomosis to supply the musculature of the tongue.

Supplied Structures

The lingual artery provides the main arterial supply to the tongue and the floor of the mouth.

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Lingual Artery

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The lingual artery courses medially to the greater horn of the hyoid bone and crosses inferiorly and facially around the hypoglossal nerve.

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