Mastoid process


Mastoid process
Bone: Mastoid process
Gray1193.png
Side view of head, showing surface relations of bones. (Mastoid process labeled near center.)
Processusmastoideusossistemporalis.PNG
Mastoid process
Latin processus mastoideus ossis temporalis
Gray's subject #34 141

The mastoid process is a conical prominence projecting from the undersurface of the mastoid portion of the temporal bone. It is located just behind the external acoustic meatus, and lateral to the styloid process. Its size and form vary somewhat; it is larger in the male than in the female.

The temporal bone contains another protrusion, the styloid process, located in close proximity to the mastoid process. The styloid process also serves as a point of attachment for muscles and has a distinctive pointed shape akin to that of a stylus, explaining the origins of the name.

This part of the skull projects from the temporal bone and is roughly pyramidal or conical in shape. One important role for this bone is as a point of attachment for several muscles - the splenius capitis, longissimus capitis, digastric posterior belly, and sternocleidomastoid. These muscles are one reason the mastoid process tends to be larger in men, because men have bigger muscles as a general rule and thus require larger points of attachment.

See also

External links

This article was originally based on an entry from a public domain edition of Gray's Anatomy. As such, some of the information contained within it may be outdated.


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • mastoid process — n the process of the temporal bone behind the ear that is well developed and of somewhat conical form in adults but inconspicuous in children * * * a nipple shaped process on the temporal bone that extends downward and forward behind the ear… …   Medical dictionary

  • mastoid process — a large, bony prominence on the base of the skull behind the ear, containing air spaces that connect with the middle ear cavity. Also called mastoid, mastoid bone. See diag. under skull. [1725 35] * * * ▪ anatomy       the smooth pyramidal or… …   Universalium

  • mastoid process — noun process of the temporal bone behind the ear at the base of the skull • Syn: ↑mastoid, ↑mastoid bone, ↑mastoidal • Derivationally related forms: ↑mastoid (for: ↑mastoid) • …   Useful english dictionary

  • mastoid process — a nipple shaped process on the temporal bone that extends downward and forward behind the ear canal and is the point of attachment of several neck muscles. It contains many air spaces (mastoid cells), which communicate with the cavity of the… …   The new mediacal dictionary

  • mastoid process — noun The conical, nipple like projection of the petrous part of the temporal bone, that is situated behind the ear in humans and many other vertebrates, and serves as a site of muscle attachment. Syn: processus mastoideus, mastoid, mastoid bone,… …   Wiktionary

  • mastoid process — noun a conical prominence of the temporal bone behind the ear, to which neck muscles are attached, and which has air spaces linked to the middle ear …   English new terms dictionary

  • mastoid process — mas′toid proc ess n. anat. a large bony prominence on the base of the skull behind the ear containing air spaces that connect with the middle ear cavity. • Etymology: 1725–35 …   From formal English to slang

  • Отросток Сосцевидный Височной Кости (Mastoid Process) — отросток височной кости, напоминающий по своему внешнему виду сосок; находится позади наружного слухового прохода, являясь местом прикрепления грудино ключично сосцевидной мышцы. Внутри сосцевидного отростка находятся воздухоносные ячейки… …   Медицинские термины

  • Mastoid cells — Coronal section of right temporal bone. (Mastoid cells labeled at bottom left.) Latin cellulae mastoideae Gray s …   Wikipedia

  • Mastoid notch — Left temporal bone. Inferior surface. (Mastoid notch visible at bottom center.) Latin incisura mastoidea ossis temporalis Gray s …   Wikipedia


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