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Styloid process

Dr Joshua Yip and Dr Henry Knipe et al.

The styloid process (or styloid part of the squamous temporal bone) is a slender pointed part of the temporal bone. It projects anteroinferiorly from the inferior surface of the petrous part of the temporal bone.

It serves as an anchor point for several muscles associated with the tongue and larynx:

It should be noted that all of these structures, along with the styloid process itself, develop from the second branchial arch (see branchial apparatus) and combined form the styloid apparatus

Morphological variants
  • type I: normal (less than 30 mm) 
  • type II: elongated (more than 30 mm)
  • type III: pseudoarticulated
  • type IV: segmented

See also


Anatomy: Head and neck

Anatomy: Head and neck

Article information

rID: 28371
Section: Anatomy
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Styloid part of temporal bone
  • Styloid part of the temporal bone

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Cases and figures

  • Figure 1: temporal bone divisions (CT anatomy)
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  • Figure 2: diagram - temporal bone
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