Interventricular foramen (of Monro)
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Each foramen of Monro lies between the roof and anterior wall of the third ventricle behind the column and body of the fornix and anterior to the thalamus 4.
Several structures pass through each foramen (in addition to CSF) 4:
arteries: distal branches of the medial posterior choroidal arteries
veins: thalamostriate, superior choroidal and septal
If the ventricles are small, then each foramen is a small crescent, concave anteriorly (indented by the fornix). On the other hand, if the ventricles are large, each foramen becomes more circular in cross-section 4.
History and etymology
The structure was named after the Scottish physician Alexander Monro (1733-1817), who first described it in 1783 3. It should be noted, however, that in his description he acknowledges that these communications were known about and previously described as far back as Galen, and this is another example of Stigler's law of eponymy 4.
To be precise, it should also be noted that the individual who described the foramen is Alexander Monro secundus (the second). His father and his son were both also called Alexander Monro (primus and tertius respectively) and all three of them held the chair of anatomy at the University of Edinburgh 4.
- 1. Stranding S. Gray's anatomy. Churchill Livingstone. (2005) ISBN:0443071683. Read it at Google Books - Find it at Amazon
- 2. Ross LMMP. Atlas of anatomy. George Thieme Verlag. (2007) ISBN:3131421215. Read it at Google Books - Find it at Amazon
- 3. Clarke E. The Human Brain and Spinal Cord. Norman Publishing. (1996) ISBN:0930405250. Read it at Google Books - Find it at Amazon
- 4. Tubbs RS, Oakes P, Maran IS, Salib C, Loukas M. The foramen of Monro: a review of its anatomy, history, pathology, and surgery. (2014) Child's nervous system : ChNS : official journal of the International Society for Pediatric Neurosurgery. 30 (10): 1645-9. doi:10.1007/s00381-014-2512-6 - Pubmed