Publications of Faculty of Medicine:DISTRIBUTION OF INTERNAL LARYNGEAL NERVE IN HUMAN: Abstract

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The details of course and distribution of human internal laryngeal nerve was studied in eleven dissected human larynges. The internal laryngeal nerve is divided into three divisions: superior, middle and inferior. The superior division supplies the most posterior part of the •m ucosa of the tongue, vallecula, lateral and median glossoepiglottic folds and the epiglottis (lingual and laryngeal surfaces). The middle division supplies the aryepiglottic fold and mucosa of the laryngeal vestibule. The inferior division supplies the mucosa of piriform fossa, the mucosa covering back of interarytenoid region, the mucosa - covering the back of posterior lamina of cricoid cartilage and the mucosa covering the sides of laryngopharynx. The inferior division gives anastomotic branch to the recurrent laryngeal nerve. It also appears to supply motor innervation to the interarytenoid muscle and upper oesophageal sphincter. This observation is contrary to current concepts of the internal laryngeal nerve as a purely sensory nerve. These findings can be used to guide surgical attempts to reinnervate the laryngeal mucosa when the sensation is lost due to neurological disease and can play a role in the explaination of different positions of vocal cords in cases of vocal cord paralysis.