The Morphometrical Analysis of the External Carotid Artery and its Branches with Multidetector Computerized Tomography Angiography Technique

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Musa Acar; Ahmet Salbacak; Mehmet Emin Sakarya; Ismail Zararsiz & Mahinur Ulusoy


The external carotid artery (ECA) is the main artery of the head and the neck region. Carotid bifurcation (CB), which is one of the place where the atherosclerotic plaques are most commonly seen. The surgical procedure of these plaques which causes cerebral vascular accident (CVA) is carotid endarterectomy. In this surgical procedure, the knowledge of the anatomical courses and variations of the carotid artery increased the surgery performance. In our study, we aimed to introduce the course, the location and the variation of the ECA’s and their branches. This study is carried out on multidetector computerized tomography angiography of the ECA’s of 50 men and 50 women, totally 200 ECA’s (100 right, 100 left). The measurement of the inner diameter of the common carotid artery (CCA) and the ECA was evaluated. The location of the CB was determined and its vertical distance to the gonion measured. We found that the superior thyroid artery (STA) originated from the CCA, the CB and the ECA. The vertical distances between the CB and the STA, lingual (LA), facial (FA) occipital (OA) were measured. The ECA and its branches were recorded. We believe that the assessment of the ECA morphometrically may comprise control groups of diseases related to the vessel diameter and this data may be used as reference in clinic and surgery. Knowing the anatomical details and variations is vital to prevent unpredictable complications in surgery.

KEY WORDS: External carotid artery; Multidetector computerized tomography; Variation; Anatomy.

How to cite this article

ACAR, M; SALBACAK, A; SAKARYA, M. E.; ZARARSIZ, I. & ULUSOY, M. The morphometrical analysis of the external carotid artery and ıts branches with multidetector computerized tomography angiography technique. Int. J. Morphol., 31(4):1407-1414, 2013.