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Anatomy Atlases: Illustrated Encyclopedia of Human Anatomic Variation: Opus II: Cardiovascular System: Arteries: Head, Neck, and Thorax: Ascending Pharyngeal Artery

Illustrated Encyclopedia of Human Anatomic Variation: Opus II: Cardiovascular System: Arteries: Head, Neck, and Thorax

Ascending Pharyngeal Artery

Ronald A. Bergman, PhD
Adel K. Afifi, MD, MS
Ryosuke Miyauchi, MD

Peer Review Status: Internally Peer Reviewed

When this artery is absent (infrequent), it may be replaced by a branch from the facial.

It may be a branch of the occipital (livini, 13%; Quain, 14%; Poynter, 15%), internal carotid (Poynter,6%), or even the common carotid or its bifurcation.

It is occasionally doubled or tripled.

It may give rise to the ascending palatine or superior laryngeal.

A palatine branch of this artery may be larger than usual and supplies the soft palate, taking the place of the inferior palatine branch of the facial, which in such cases is small. The palatine branch divides into two, anterior and posterior, both of which anastomose across the midline with the vessels of the opposite side.

This artery varies greatly as to its place of origin from the external carotid artery or bifurcation of the common carotid artery (~65-80%), it may be a branch of the occipital artery (20 to 14%), or it may arise from the common carotid artery (9 to 7%).

The artery is usually the second branch of the external carotid artery, though it may be the first.

This artery may give rise to esophageal arteries.

Image 424

Ascending Palatine

See Image 424


Anson, B.J. (1966) Morris' Human Anatomy, 12tth ed. The Blakiston Division, McGraw-Hill Book Company, New York.

Bergman, R.A., Thompson, S.A., Afifi, A.K. and F.A. Saadeh. (1988) Compendium of Human Anatomic Variation: Catalog, Atlas and World Literature. Urban & Schwarzenberg, Baltimore and Munich.

Foucher, -. (1896) Anomalie de l'artère pharyngienne ascendante. L'Union Medicale du Canada 25:17-19.

Griffin, E.H. (1896) Two cases of an enlarged ascending pharyngeal artery, situated on the posterior wall of the pharynx. Med. Rec., N.Y. 50:247.

Poynter, C.W.M. (1922) Congenital Anomalies of the Arteries and Veins of the Human Body with Bibliography. The University Studies of the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. 22:1-106.

Schaefer, E.A., Symington, J. and T.H. Bryce, Eds. (1915) Quain's Anatomy, 11th ed., Longmans, Green and Co., London.

Swigart, LaV.L., Siekert, R.G., Hambley, W.C. and B.J. Anson. (1950) The esophageal arteries. An anatomic study of 150 specimens. Surg., Gynecol. Obstet. 90:234-243.

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Anatomy Atlases is curated by Michael P. D'Alessandro, M.D. and Ronald A. Bergman, Ph.D.

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