Stylopharyngeus

Written by Max Bidewell

Last updated February 3, 2023 • 5 Revisions

The stylopharyngeus is a muscle of the pharynx. It is unique amongst the pharyngeal muscles in that it is innervated by the glossopharyngeal nerve and not the vagus nerve.

  • Attachments: Originates from the styloid process of the temporal bone and inserts onto the pharyngeal wall
  • Action: Elevates the pharynx during swallowing
  • Innervation: Glossopharyngeal nerve (CN IX).
  • Blood supply: Pharyngeal branch of the ascending pharyngeal artery (branch of external carotid artery).

Fig 2
Lateral view of the deep structures of the pharynx. Visible are the circular muscles of the pharynx, and the stylopharyngeus.

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