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Submandibular Gland
Digestive System

Submandibular Gland

Glandula submandibularis

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Quick Facts

Location: Within the submandibular triangle of the anterior neck.

Arterial supply: Glandular branches of facial artery.

Venous Drainage: Branches of facial vein.

Innervation: Chorda tympani (CN VII).

Lymphatic drainage: Deep cervical lymph nodes.

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Structure

The submandibular gland has an irregular shape and consists of superficial and deep portions. The superficial portion sits within the submandibular triangle of the neck, between the border of the mylohyoid muscle and the posterior aspect of the mandible. The deep portion extends around the free posterior border of the mylohyoid muscle, so that it’s positioned in the floor of the mouth.

Anatomical Relations

The deep portion of the submandibular gland extends anteriorly where it is continuous with the sublingual duct. The gland lies between the lingual nerve above and the hypoglossal nerve below. However, as the duct extends anteriorly towards its opening at the sublingual papillae, the lingual nerve hooks beneath the submandibular duct.

Function

The submandibular gland secretes mucous and serous saliva.

Arterial Supply

Glandular branches of the facial artery supply the submandibular gland.

Venous Drainage

The venous drainage of the submandibular gland corresponds to arterial supply.

Innervation

The ganglionic branches of the lingual nerve to the submandibular ganglion are parasympathetic fibers. They transmit the preganglionic parasympathetic fibers that originated in the chorda tympani to the submandibular ganglion. In this ganglion, these parasympathetic fibers synapse with postganglionic parasympathetic fibers that will innervate the submandibular gland.

Lymphatic Drainage

Submandibular lymph nodes surround the mandibular surface of the gland and may even extend into the gland. These nodes drain via the deep cervical lymph nodes.

List of Clinical Correlates

- Xerostomia

Learn more about this topic from other Elsevier products

Submandibular Gland

ScienceDirect image

The submandibular glands are mixed glands situated ventrally between the caudal border of the mandibles and the thoracic inlet.

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