Maxillary nerve

The maxillary nerve is a nerve located within the mid-facial region of on the human body. The nerve follows a pathway from the cavernous sinus (a blood-filled space behind each eye), through the head.

At the origin of the nerve, it resembles a thin band, but the nerve becomes cylindrical and harder as it reaches its end. The nerve ends on the face, where it's then known as the infraorbital nerve.

The nerve consists of four different branches where the nerve branches off into different areas of the body. Maxillary nerve refers to the main portion of the nerve and every time it branches off, it becomes known as a different nerve. The four areas are the infraorbital canal (located below the eye), pterygopalatine fossa (a deep space in the skull located behind the jaw), the cranium (the part of the skull that holds the brain), and the face.

Recent studies found that dental and facial surgeries may be complicated by injury to this nerve.

Written and medically reviewed by the Healthline Editorial Team
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In Depth: Maxillary nerve

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