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Middle meningeal artery

Dr Kieran Kusel and Dr Henry Knipe et al.

The middle meningeal artery branches off the first part of the maxillary artery. It passes vertically through the roots of the auriculotemporal nerve and enters the middle cranial fossa via the foramen spinosum. Here it gives off two branches - superior tympanic branch and ganglionic branch - before dividing into anterior and posterior divisions:

  • The anterior division runs anterolaterally through the middle cranial fossa on the greater wing of sphenoid before coursing superiorly, often grooving the bone, and passes under the pterion before giving its terminal branches over the upper parietal bone.
  • The posterior division runs horizontally posteriorly over the squamous part of the temporal bone to give rise to its terminal branches over the lower parietal bone.

Related pathology

  • epidural hematoma, which is most commonly due to traumatic rupture of the middle meningeal artery
  • chronic recurrent subdural hematoma, which may be treated with middle meningeal artery embolization 3
  • intracranial dural arteriovenous fistula, for which the middle meningeal artery is the most common arterial feeder 3
  • meningioma, which may be embolized preoperatively via the middle meningeal artery 3
Anatomy: Head and neck

Anatomy: Head and neck

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Article information

rID: 24263
Section: Anatomy
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Middle meningeal arteries
  • Anterior division of the middle meningeal artery
  • Posterior division of the middle meningeal artery

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1: variant - arising from ophthalmic
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