Trochlea (eye)

Last revised by Dr Daniel J Bell on 03 May 2022

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.

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