Middle cranial fossa

Last revised by Raymond Chieng on 10 May 2023

The middle cranial fossa is a butterfly-shaped depression of the skull base, which is narrow in the middle and wider laterally. It houses the temporal lobes of the cerebrum.

Gross anatomy

The middle cranial fossa can be divided into medial and lateral parts. In the medial part, the following structures are present from anterior to posterior 1:

The lateral part is considerably deeper than the medial part to allow for the temporal lobes. Structures present in the lateral part from anterior to posterior are 1:


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Cases and figures

  • Figure 1
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  • Figure 2: skull and facial bones
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