Facial artery

Dr Dan J Bell and Dr Jeremy Jones et al.

The facial artery is one of the branches of the external carotid artery and supplies blood to the structures of the face.

Summary
  • origin: branch of the external carotid artery a little above the level of the lingual artery
  • course: ascends anteriorly through the cheek with a tortuous route towards the nasolabial fold
  • branches
    • cervical
      • ascending palatine artery
      • tonsillar branch
      • submental artery
      • glandular branches
    • facial
      • inferior labial artery
      • superior labial artery
      • lateral nasal branch
  • termination: anterior face as angular artery (terminal branch)

Variant anatomy

The facial artery may arise from a common trunk with the lingual artery, the linguofacial trunk.

History and etymology

The facial artery was previously known as the external maxillary artery, e.g. old editions of Gray's anatomy 1. This was in contradistinction to the internal maxillary artery which is now known simply as the maxillary artery.

Head and neck anatomy
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Article information

rID: 5910
Section: Anatomy
Tags: refs, cases
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Facial arteries

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Cases and figures

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    Figure 1: branches of the external carotid artery
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    Figure 2: branches of the carotid
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    Figure 3: facial artery and branches
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