Trochlea (eye)

Last revised by Derek Smith on 2 Feb 2023

The trochlea is a cartilaginous structure acting as a pulley for the superior oblique muscle of the eye

The trochlea inserts on the trochlear fovea and spine located on the anteromedial part of the orbital roof. The tendon of superior oblique muscle passes through it 1.

The function of the trochlea is to allow the superior oblique muscle tendon to quickly change its direction 2.

Trochlea derives from the Greek word "τροχιλεία" (trochileia) which means pulley 4.

Some pathologic conditions may alter the passage of the superior muscle tendon through the trochlea causing Brown syndrome 3.

ADVERTISEMENT: Supporters see fewer/no ads

Cases and figures

  • Case 1: bilateral trochlear apparatus calcification
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 2: left trochlear apparatus enhancement (Brown syndrome)
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Updating… Please wait.

     Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

     Thank you for updating your details.