P. Pillay; S. Ishwarkumar & K. S. Satyapal
The cutaneous branches of the superficial cervical plexus (SCP) emerge at variable points, from beneath the posterior margin of the sternocleidomastoid muscle and from this point radiate like “spokes of a wheel” antero-inferiorly and postero- superiorly. This study aimed to classify the emerging points of the branches of the superficial cervical plexus in relation to their location on the sternocleidomastoid muscle. In order to classify the emerging points of the superficial cervical plexus, the sternocleidomastoid muscle was first measured from mastoid process to clavicle; subsequently each branch of the superficial cervical plexus was measured from the mastoid process to their exit points. The emerging points of the superficial cervical plexus branches were classified according to Kim et al. (2002) seven categories: Type I (32 %); Type II (13 %); Type III (35 %); Type IV (13 %); Type V, VI, VII (2 %). The order in which the superficial cervical plexus branches emerged from the posterior margin of the sternocleidomastoid muscle remained constant, i.e. lesser occipital, great auricular, transverse cervical and supraclavicular nerves. Knowledge of emerging points may assist in the effective anaesthesia to all branches of the superficial cervical plexus during surgical procedures of the neck, viz. carotid endarterectomy and thyroid surgery.
KEY WORDS: Superficial cervical plexus; Fetal, emerging points; Branching patterns.
PILLAY, P.; ISHWARKUMAR, S. & SATYAPAL, K. S. Classification of the patterns of the emerging branches of the superficial cervical plexus. Int. J. Morphol., 39(2):607-611, 2021.