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Transverse sinus

Anatomy and function of the transverse sinus.

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Hello everyone! This is Matt from Kenhub, and in this tutorial, we are going to look at the transverse sinus which is one of the dural venous sinuses of the brain that drain venous blood from the brain and the meninges.

As I just mentioned, the dural venous sinuses drain venous blood from the brain and the meninges into the internal jugular vein which is this structure you see here highlighted in green. These venous channels are located between the endosteal and meningeal layers of the dura mater in the cranial cavity and their walls are lined by endothelium. Another thing that sets the dural venous sinuses apart from the other venous vessels is that they do not contain valves or are valveless which allows for a bidirectional flow of blood within the vessels. There are six paired dural venous sinuses and four unpaired dural venous sinuses. The transverse sinus is one of the paired sinuses.

The transverse sinus travels bilaterally in the base of tentorium cerebelli in a groove along the inner surface occipital bone as you can see in this image here. It arises at the confluence of sinuses at the level of the internal occipital protuberance and continues laterally and anteriorly as it empties into the sigmoid sinus.

As I just mentioned, the transverse sinus arises at the confluence of sinuses and as such receives venous blood from the three sinuses that make up the confluence of sinuses – the superior sagittal sinus, the straight sinus and the occipital sinus. Aside from these three sinuses, the transverse sinus also receives venous contributions from the inferior cerebral vein and the inferior anastomotic vein of Labbé which communications with the vein of Trolard and the superficial middle cerebral vein. It opens into the sigmoid sinus which in turn reaches the jugular bulb draining into the internal jugular vein.

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