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The superior nuchal line is one of the four curved lines on the external surface of the occipital bone. The other lines are the upper nuchal line, the median nuchal line and the inferior nuchal line. All of these lines are found on the squamous part of the occipital bone. The superior nuchal line extends laterally from the external occipital protuberance (a bony bump on the external surface of the occipital bone) on either side. It is located inferior to the highest nuchal line. The superior nuchal line provides an attachment site for three muscles: the trapezius, sternocleidomastoid and the splenius capitis. The trapezius attaches to the medial third of the line (and to the external occipital protuberance) and the sternocleidomastoid to the lateral half of the line. The splenius capitis attaches just below the lateral third of the line.
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