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Deep Occipital Nodes (Right)
Lymphoid System

Deep Occipital Nodes (Right)

Nodi occipitales profundi

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Quick Facts

Location: Back of the head, lateral to the inferior nuchal line.

Drainage: Muscles of the nape of the neck and the superficial occipital nodes.

Direction of Flow: Sternocleidomastoid nodes > subtrapezius nodes > supraclavicular nodes > thoracic duct (left) or right lymphatic duct.

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The deep occipital lymph nodes are small nodes located in the posterior neck, deep to the origin of splenius capitis muscle and posterior to the origin of obliquus capitis superior muscle. These lymph nodes have a close anatomical relation to the occipital artery and vein as they travel through the occipital groove of the temporal bone.

Their drainage territory includes the superior muscles in the posterior aspect of the neck. These nodes also receive afferents from the superficial occipital lymph nodes; thus, these nodes act as a secondary filter for fluid collected from more superficial areas of the back of the head and neck (Földi et al., 2012).

Drainage of these nodes is via the accessory chain which makes up part of the deep lateral cervical nodes. This chain has a close anatomical relation with the accessory chain and drains into the supraclavicular nodes (Földi et al., 2012).


Földi, M., Földi, E., Strößenreuther, R. and Kubik, S. (2012) Földi's Textbook of Lymphology: for Physicians and Lymphedema Therapists. Elsevier Health Sciences.

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