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Muscles of mastication

Synonyms: Musculi masticatorii, chewing muscles, jaw muscles
German: Kaumuskulatur

1 Definition

The muscles of mastication consist of four skeletal muscles accreted onto the mandible and which play a major role in mastication.

Some authors also count the throat muscles among the masticatory muscles.

2 Muscles

The following four muscles are counted as muscles of mastication:

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3 Innervation

All four muscles are innervated by branches of the mandibular nerve, a main branch of the trigeminal nerve.

4 Arrangement

The muscles of mastication are to a great extent slidably arranged relative to their environment, without limiting the function of the adjacent organs. The muscle is also wrapped in crude fascia (fascia masseterica, [[fascia temporalis]), which on the one hand ensures the necessary space, on the other hand necessitates as little pressure and squeezing in the area as possible.

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