Superior cerebellar artery

Dr Craig Hacking and A.Prof Frank Gaillard et al.

The superior cerebellar artery (SCA) arises from the distal basilar artery, just below the posterior cerebral artery (PCA) and typically supplies:

Although, unlike the anterior inferior cerebellar artery (AICA) and posterior inferior cerebellar artery (PICA) the SCA is rarely absent, it is frequently duplicated:

  • unilateral duplication: 28%
  • bilateral duplication: 8%
  • triplication: 2%

The upper branch, when multiple, may arise from the PCA and usually supplies the vermis, whereas the lower branch supplies the hemisphere.


  • prepontine segment
  • ambient segment
  • quadrigeminal segment


  • perforating branches
    • pons
    • midbrain
    • inferior colliculus
  • lateral (marginal) branch
    • largest branch of the SCA
    • usually arises from the ambient segment
    • runs posteriorly in the region of the interhemispheric fissure
    • gives off hemispheric branches that course superiorly over the superior cerebellar hemisphere
  • hemispheric branches
    • arise from the lateral (marginal) branch and from the SCA distal to the origin of the lateral branch also from the ambient segment
    • supplies dentate nucleus
    • superior vermis
    • medial quadrigeminal lobule
    • superior semilunar lobule
  • superior vermian
    • terminal branch(es) of the SCA
    • anastomose with inferior vermian branches of the PICA
Anatomy: Brain
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Article information

rID: 5013
Section: Anatomy
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Superior cerebellar artery (SCA)
  • SCA

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Cases and figures

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    Figure 1: posterior fossa vascular territories
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    Figure 2: common variants of the circle of Willis: diagrams
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    Figure 2: superior cerebellum
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    Figure 4: origin of the cerebellar arteries
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    Figure 5: duplicated superior cerebellar artery
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    Figure 6: PICA, AICA and SCA
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    Case 1: superior cerebellar artery infarct
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