The occipital emissary vein is also known as simply the occipital vein. This small vein passes through the condylar canal. This vein drains the occipital region. The internal jugular vein is supplied by this occipital vein. The suboccipital vein may also be supplied by this vein. Occipital veins also include superficial veins. These veins drain into the occipital cortex. After draining into the occipital cortex, the veins empty into the transverse sinus and superior sagittal. The occipital vein follows the path of the occipital artery in reverse. It opens into the suboccipital venous plexus after it reaches the underside of the trapezius muscle. The vein's main location is the scalp. Aneurysms or bleeds of the occipital vein will occur more slowly than in that of arteries. Bleeds and aneurysms are due to either the weakening of the vein over time or due to the buildup of atherosclerosis, which can lead to heart disease. Veins such as the occipital vein may become blocked and cause trouble with the lungs, heart, or brain.
Written and medically reviewed by the Healthline Editorial Team
In Depth: Occipital vein