Skip to main content

Unfortunately we don't fully support your browser. If you have the option to, please upgrade to a newer version or use Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome, or Safari 14 or newer. If you are unable to, and need support, please send us your feedback.

Elsevier
Publish with us
Medial Pterygoid Muscle (Left)
Muscular System

Medial Pterygoid Muscle (Left)

Musculus pterygoideus medialis

Read more

Quick Facts

Origin: Medial surface of lateral pterygoid plate of sphenoid bone, maxillary tuberosity, and pyramidal process of palatine bone.

Insertion: Medial surface of ramus and angle of the mandible.

Action: Laterally moves and protracts mandible.

Innervation: Nerve to medial pterygoid muscle (CN V3).

Arterial Supply: Pterygoid branches of maxillary artery.

Complete Anatomy
The world's most advanced 3D anatomy platform
Try it for Free

Origin

The medial pterygoid muscle is a quadrangular muscle that has two heads. The larger deep head originates from the medial surface of the lateral pterygoid plate of the sphenoid bone. The smaller superficial head of the medial pterygoid muscle originates from the maxillary tuberosity and the pyramidal process of the palatine bone.

Insertion

The fibers of the medial pterygoid course in a posterolateral direction and attach to the medial surface of the angle and ramus of the mandible by way of a strong tendinous lamina.

Actions

Overall, the medial pterygoid muscle is involved in multiple actions:

- during unilateral contraction, it laterally moves the mandible to the opposite side at the temporomandibular joint;

- during bilateral contraction, it protracts the mandible at the temporomandibular joint;

- during bilateral contraction, it assists in elevation of the mandible at the temporomandibular joint (Standring, 2016).

List of Clinical Correlates

- Trismus

References

Standring, S. (2016) Gray's Anatomy: The Anatomical Basis of Clinical Practice. Gray's Anatomy Series 41st edn.: Elsevier Limited.

Learn more about this topic from other Elsevier products

Medial Pterygoid Muscle

ScienceDirect image

The medial pterygoid muscles of either side also move the mandible to produce a grinding movement of the teeth.

Explore on ScienceDirect(opens in new tab/window)

Complete Anatomy

The world's most advanced 3D anatomy platform

Complete Anatomy