Uvula

Last revised by Dr Mostafa El-Feky on 16 Jan 2021

The uvula is a small, conical, pendulous process projected inferiorly from the midline posterior margin of the soft palate. It is primarily formed from the insertions of the two muscles of the uvula and their covering mucosa.

  • location: posterior midline soft palate
  • blood supply: from ascending palatine and pharyngeal arteries
  • innervation: sensory from the accessory nerve

The uvula is supplied by branches of the arteries that supply the soft palate:

The function of the uvula is to contribute to palatopharyngeal closure as part of deglutition 4.

An elongated uvula is a rare finding that may present with symptoms such as chronic cough and obstructive sleep apnea. Recurrent upper airway obstruction by the elongated uvula can also mimic asthma in children. Uvulectomy is the mainstay of treatment and is curative.

Uvula is Latin for 'little grape', and is the diminutive form of the Latin word 'uva' meaning grape 3.

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1: elongated uvula - pediatric
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