Anatomical variations of the stylopharyngeus and superior constrictors in relation to their function

Da Yae Choi, Jung Hee Bae, Kyung Seok Hu, Hee Jin Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


The aims of this study were to clarify the topography and variations stylopharyngeus (STP) and superior constrictor (SC) muscles, and to examine what role they play in the pharyngeal movement. Forty-four specimens (22 right and 22 left sides) from embalmed Korean adult cadavers (13 males, 9 females; age range, 46–89 years; mean age, 69.2 years) were used in this study. The accessory bundle of STP and petropharyngeus was found in 18.2% (8/44) and 25.0% (11/44) of cases, respectively. A variation of the STP, in which it ran transversely and merged with the SC muscle, was found in 2.3% (1/44) of cases while a variation of the SC muscle, in which it ran longitudinally and merged with the contralateral constrictors, was found in 11.4% (5/44). The variant muscle bundles play their own role in pharyngeal movement according to their morphology. These results provide information that will help a comprehensive understanding of the effects of pharyngeal muscles on movement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)417-421
Number of pages5
JournalAnatomy and Cell Biology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2020. Anatomy & Cell Biology

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Anatomy
  • Histology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Cell Biology


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