The nasal bones are small paired oblong upper central facial bones placed side by side between the frontal processes of the maxilla, jointly forming the nasal ridge.

Gross anatomy

The nasal bone has two surfaces:

  • external surface attaches to the procerus and nasalis muscles
  • internal, which is transversely concave, with a groove for the anterior ethmoidal nerve

The four borders of the roughly quadrangular nasal bone are:



The nasal bones ossify from a single center which appears early in the third month within the cartilaginous nasal capsule, which can be assessed during the 12th-week prenatal scan for nasal bone appearance. Its absence is associated with Down syndrome.

Anatomy: Head and neck

Anatomy: Head and neck

Article information

rID: 46903
Section: Anatomy
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • nasal bones

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Cases and figures

  • Figure 1: lateral view (Gray's illustrations)
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  • Figure 2: medial view (Gray's illustrations)
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  • Figure 3: nasal and lacrimal bones (Gray's illustration)
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  • Case 1: normal nasal bone (child)
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