Indexed on: 14 Jul '12Published on: 14 Jul '12Published in: Journal of Korean Neurosurgical Society
This study was performed to determine the anatomical landmarks and optimal dissection points of the facial nerve (FN) and the hypoglossal nerve (HGN) in the submandibular region to provide guidance for hypoglossal-facial nerve anastomosis (HFNA).Twenty-nine specimens were obtained from 15 formalin-fixed adult cadavers. Distances were measured based on the mastoid process tip (MPT), common carotid artery bifurcation (CCAB), and the digastric muscle posterior belly (DMPB).The shortest distance from the MPT to the stylomastoid foramen was 14.1±2.9 mm. The distance from the MPT to the FN origin was 8.6±2.8 mm anteriorly and 5.9±2.8 mm superiorly. The distance from the CCAB to the crossing point of the HGN and the internal carotid artery was 18.5±6.7 mm, and that to the crossing point of the HGN and the external carotid artery was 15.1±5.7 mm. The distance from the CCAB to the HGN bifurcation was 26.6±7.5 mm. The distance from the digastric groove to the HGN, which was found under the DMPB, was about 35.8±5.7 mm. The distance from the digastric groove to the HGN, which was found under the DMPB, corresponded to about 65.5% of the whole length of the DMPB.This study provides useful information regarding the morphometric anatomy of the submandibular region, and the presented morphological data on the nerves and surrounding structures will aid in understanding the anatomical structures more accurately to prevent complications of HFNA.