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Inferior Nasal Concha

The inferior nasal concha is the most caudally based of the three nasal conchae. While the superior and middle nasal conchae form part of the perpendicular plate of the ethmoid bone, the inferior nasal concha is a bony structure by itself. It sits on the vertical bony plate known as the nasal septum, separating the nasal cavity into two bilateral and symmetrical anatomical caves.

Recommended video: Lateral wall of nasal cavity
Bones, cartilages and mucosa with focus on the lateral wall.

Anatomy

The pair of curved inferior nasal conchae overhang the wall on either side as a lateral protuberance. They mature via endochondral ossification and nest within a curvature of the nasal septum, so that its protuberance doesn’t span the entire width of the nasal cavity.

Inferior nasal concha - medial view

Inferior nasal concha - medial view

Articulating bony structures include the frontal process of the maxilla anteriorly, the uncinate process of the ethmoid bone and the lacrimal bone anteromedially, and the perpendicular plate of the palatine bone posteromedially.

Osseous Development

Laterally, the inferior nasal concha is concave and has no articulations, but it is not the same as the nasal bones or the vomer. Compared to them, the bone is rounded, with an irregular surface of small impressions and tiny holes. The inferior nasal concha forms the inferior nasal meatus. The medial surface, closest to the nasal septum, is convex and hold numerous grooves that house passing vessels.

Summary

The inferior nasal concha is the most caudally based of the three nasal conchae and sits on the vertical bony plate known as the nasal septum. The pair of inferior nasal conchae mature via endochondral ossification. Its articulating bony structures include:

  • frontal process of the maxilla anteriorly
  • the uncinate process of the ethmoid bone and the lacrimal bone anteromedially
  • perpendicular plate of the palatine bone posteromedially

The inferior nasal concha forms the inferior nasal meatus.

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Show references

Reference:

  • Neil S. Norton, Ph.D. and Frank H. Netter, MD, Netter’s Head and Neck Anatomy for Dentistry, 2nd Edition, Elsevier Saunders, Chapter 2 Osteology, Page 41.

Author:

  • Dr. Alexandra Sieroslawska

Illustrators:

  • Inferior nasal concha - medial view - Yousun Koh
© Unless stated otherwise, all content, including illustrations are exclusive property of Kenhub GmbH, and are protected by German and international copyright laws. All rights reserved.

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