Transverse muscle of the tongue

Last revised by Daniel J Bell on 2 Aug 2021

The transverse muscle of the tongue is one of the four intrinsic muscles of the tongue which alters the shape of the tongue mass, being entirely confined to the tongue without an extraglossal attachment (cf. extrinsic muscles of the tongue).

The muscles fibers attach proximally to the fibrous median septum and attach distally to the submucosal fibrous layer of the lateral tongue margins. They intersect with the fibers of the vertical intrinsic muscle lying between the superior and inferior longitudinal intrinsic muscles

Like all the intrinsic muscles of the tongue, it is innervated by the hypoglossal nerve (CN XII).

The fibers act to elongate and protrude the tongue.

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