The subarcuate canaliculus and its artery - a radioanatomical study
The anatomy of the subarcuate canaliculus (SAC), subarcuate fossa (SAF) and subarcuate artery (SAA) was studied in 12 cadavers and 35 dry temporal bones. Each cadaver was scanned with high resolution CT (HRCT) prior to microdissection. The SAC was always found to be a single canal located between the two arcs of the anterior semicircular canal in both microdissections and HRCT scans and the internal acoustic meatus was observed to be located just inferior to the SAC. The SAC was on average of 9.2 mm in length and 1 mm in width. The SAF was situated at a distance of 4.2 mm from the internal acoustic meatus, 3.5 mm from the groove for the superior petrosal sinus, 6.7 mm from the opening of the vestibular canaliculus and 11.5 mm from the most superior part of the jugular foramen. The SAA was found to originate from the anterior inferior cerebellar artery in 9 cadavers and from the internal auditory artery in 3 cadavers. The SAA always emerged from the main artery outside the internal acoustic meatus. It ran through the SAC as a single artery. This study investigated CT correlated anatomical aspects of the subarcuate canaliculus and its artery which is claimed to be responsible for the blood supply of the mastoid antrum, facial canal and bony labyrinth.
Available from: Paul M Parizel
- "As the petrous bone grows, the SAF progressively narrows during early life to form a so-called 'canaliculus' shape  . Most publications of the appearance of the PMC are of adults     , with only 2 publications of the high resolution computed tomography (HRCT) features of the PMC in a large number of children  . However, these studies do not describe the year-by-year change in the width and shape of the PMC during the first years of life, despite this being described in anatomical studies  . "
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The adult petromastoid canal (PMC) is a thin anatomical structure, but in young children, it can be wide on high resolution CT (HRCT) scans. We performed this study to evaluate the year-by-year change in width and shape of the PMC in the young child.
Materials and methods:
We retrospectively reviewed temporal bone HRCT scans, performed between 2007 and 2012. Eighty children were included (age range: 0.3-6.9 years; median age: 3.1 years; 56% male). All scans had a slice thickness of ≤ 1 mm.
The average width of the PMC was 1.95 mm in children < 2 years, compared to 0.83 mm in children ≥ 2 (p < 0.001). We categorized the PMC into 4 subtypes. A bulky (type III) PMC was predominant < 2 years. A thin curvilinear (type I) PMC was more prevalent in the older children. Type II and IV PMC were found infrequently. The PMC width correlated inversely with the degree of pericapsular ossification (p<0.001), and mastoid pneumatisation (p < 0.001).
A wide PMC (≥ 1 mm) is a common finding in children < 2 years. As children grow older, the PMC progressively narrows. This correlates to increased temporal bone pneumatisation and ossification of the otic capsule.
International journal of pediatric otorhinolaryngology 03/2013; 77(5). DOI:10.1016/j.ijporl.2013.02.015 · 1.19 Impact Factor
Available from: uni-muenchen.de
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ABSTRACT: The objective was to assess visibility and anatomy of the petromastoid canal in high-resolution CT. Computed tomography images of 188 patients were reviewed for delineation of the petromastoid canal. This bony canal connects the mastoid antrum with the cranial cavity and houses the subarcuate artery and vein. The diameter, obtained in the middle portion of the canal, was compared with the diameter of the vestibular and cochlear aqueduct in all patients, and absolute values measured in 20 cases. Collimation was 1 mm in 164 and 2 mm in 24 examinations. Additionally, temporal bone of a cadaver was imaged and microdissected. The petromastoid canal was identified bilaterally in all 164 scans that were obtained with a slice thickness of 1 mm. In 5 of the 24 patients imaged with a collimation of 2 mm, the canal was not visible, most probably due to partial-volume effects. The petromastoid canal had the same diameter as the cochlear aqueduct in 42/44 (right/left), exceeded it in 66/61 and was smaller in 75/78 cases. In comparison to the vestibular aqueduct it had an equal diameter in 38/41 (right/left), exceeded it in 63/61, and was rated as smaller in 82/81 temporal bones. Diameters for the canals were: petromastoid canal 0.51+/-0.04 mm; cochlear aqueduct 0.57+/-0.03; and vestibular aqueduct 0.63+/-0.06 mm. Microdissection of the specimen revealed the entire course of the canal and demonstrated a similar appearance of the structure as in the images. The petromastoid canal can easily be identified on high-resolution, thin-slice CT images. Knowledge of the anatomy of this bony canal prevents misinterpretation as pathological structure, such as fracture line, which might occur if this structure is not known.
European Radiology 12/2002; 12(11):2770-5. DOI:10.1007/s00330-002-1306-5 · 4.01 Impact Factor
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