Plate 10.176 Lip
Ronald A. Bergman, Ph.D., Adel K. Afifi, M.D., Paul M. Heidger,
Peer Review Status: Externally Peer Reviewed
Human, 10% formalin, H. & E., 6 x.
The external covering of the lip is keratinized stratified squamous epithelium. Note also the numerous hair follicles. As the epithelium approaches the so-called red area of the lip, the epithelium becomes non-keratinized stratified squamous epithelium. This region is characterized by a lack of small labial glands; hence, the lip must be licked by the tongue to keep it moist. The epithelium within the oral cavity is moistened by labial and other glands associated with the oral cavity.
Note the orbicularis oris muscle, which forms a continuous circular band within the lips, and whose action closes the lips and mouth. The muscle is seen cut in cross-section.
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