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Lateral views of the brain

Structures seen on the lateral views of the brain.

Show transcript

Hello, everyone! This is Joao from Kenhub, and welcome to another anatomy tutorial where, this time, we’re going to be talking about the lateral view of the brain, starting off with this image that you see now on the screen. This is the lateral right side of your brain, and as you can see here, the brain is divided into two identical hemispheres or cerebral hemispheres that cover most of this area here known as the brain stem.

Now, in this tutorial, we will look at the structures seen on the lateral aspect of the brain. We will be paying attention to the following structures: the cerebral lobes, the cerebral gyri, the cerebral poles, the opercula, and also the sulci. So all these structures will be discussed—those that we can see from the lateral views of the brain.

And as I mentioned, we’re going to start off with a lobe. This is the frontal lobe that we see now, highlighted in green. And the frontal lobe of the brain is located anterior to the parietal lobe. It is the anterior-most lobe of the cerebral cortex and extends from the anterior frontal pole to the central sulcus, which, then, separates it from the parietal lobe.

Now, there are few structures that are located on the frontal lobe that is good to highlight here on this tutorial. One is the primary motor cortex. The other one is the Broca’s motor speech center, and the premotor areas.

We’re going to move on to another lobe that we see now, highlighted in green. I mentioned this one before. This is the parietal lobe. And the primary sensory cortex is located on the postcentral gyrus of the parietal lobes.

The parietal lobes are bordered anteriorly by the central sulcus and posteriorly by the parieto-occipital sulcus. These are structures that we’re also going to be covering here on this tutorial. So keep that in mind as we move on forward.

Now, the lateral sulcus separates the parietal lobe from the temporal lobe of the cerebral cortex.

The next one that we’re going to be seeing now, highlighted in green, this is known as the superior parietal lobule. And the superior parietal lobule is bounded anteriorly by the upper part of the postcentral sulcus and inferiorly by the intraparietal sulcus.

Now, the Brodmann areas 5 and 7 are located in this lobule, and it is associated with spatial orientation.

If you have a superior parietal lobule, you have to have now this one. This is the inferior parietal lobule (a tongue twister here). Now, the inferior parietal lobule lies below the superior parietal gyrus and the intraparietal sulcus. It is bounded anteriorly by the lower part of the postcentral sulcus. And the angular and super marginal gyri of the parietal lobe are located on the inferior parietal lobule.

The next lobe on our list is now seen, highlighted in green now, and we’re looking at the lateral left view of the brain, but you of course have one parietal… one temporal lobe, as you can see here, on the right side as well. But the temporal lobe is located on the lateral side of the cerebral cortex, as you can clearly see here on this image. And the primary auditory cortex and the Wernicke’s area are located on the temporal lobe.

The functions that the temporal lobe is involved in include emotion, sensory input processing, visual memories, language comprehension. So these… this is just a quick list that I wanted to associate here with the temporal lobe, so you can add to your own notes.

The next one is going to be this that you see here now on the lateral, right side, but you could also see it from the lateral left. This is known as the occipital lobe, seen here, highlighted in green.

The occipital lobe is the posteriormost lobe of the cerebral cortex. The primary visual cortex, also known as Brodmann area 17 is located on this lobe.

We’re going to move on to the next structure, now seen highlighted in green, found on the anteriormost part of the cerebral hemispheres. And this is known as the frontal pole of the brain.

The next one, we’re going to now start on the gyri. This is known as the superior frontal gyrus. And the superior frontal gyrus is located on the frontal lobe of the cerebral cortex.

Functions associated with this lobe include laughter, working memory, and self-awareness.

The next gyrus that we’re going to be seeing now, highlighted in green, this is known as the middle frontal gyrus. The middle frontal gyrus is located in the frontal lobe between the superior and inferior frontal gyri that are separated from it via the superior and inferior frontal sulci.

We’re going to now see this one that you now notice here, highlighted in green. This is known as the inferior frontal gyrus. And the inferior frontal gyrus is located in the frontal lobe, below the one that we saw on the previous slide, the middle frontal gyrus.

Now, Brodmann areas 44, 45, and 47 are located on the inferior frontal gyrus.

Next area that you see now, highlighted in green, this is known as the orbital part of the inferior frontal gyrus, which covers the insula. As a result, sometimes, we can call it also the opercularis, which mean “covering.”

Now, part of the gyrus lies below the anterior ramus of the lateral sulcus.

We’re now ready to move on to this part that you see highlighted in green, which is known as the triangular part of the inferior frontal gyrus.

Now, this is where Brodmann area 45 is located, in the frontal lobe of the cerebral cortex. This area, together with Brodmann area 44, makes up the Broca’s area, which is the motor speech center.

Now, this area lies between the ascending and descending rami of the lateral sulcus.

We are ready to move on to another structure that you see, highlighted here in green, this is known as the precentral gyrus. And the primary motor cortex is located on the precentral gyrus. This can also be referred to as the Brodmann area 4.

It is located just in front of the central sulcus of the frontal lobe. This area is supplied by branches of the middle cerebral artery and branches of the anterior cerebral artery.

We are now looking at this highlight, which is the postcentral gyrus, and this structure is one of the gyri of the parietal lobe. It is located between the central and postcentral sulcus and is the location of the primary somatosensory cortex.

The next structure that you see, highlighted on the brain here, this is known as the supramarginal gyrus, which is found at the posterior end of the posterior ramus of the lateral sulcus on the parietal lobe. Here, we find Brodmann area 40.

The next structure that we’re going to be talking about, this is known as the angular gyrus, which is located on the parietal lobe at the posterior end of the superior temporal sulcus. It lies behind the supramarginal gyrus and is also known as Brodmann area 39.

This area is associated with complex language functions and also spatial cognition.

Next in line, we have another structure highlighted here in green. This is known as the superior temporal gyrus. And the superior temporal gyrus is located between the lateral and superior temporal sulci of the temporal lobe.

The temporal operculum is part of the superior temporal gyrus. Here, we also find the Wernicke’s area and also Brodmann area 22, which is one of the speech centers of the cerebral cortex and is associated with understanding spoken as well as written language.

We go a bit further down to this highlight that you see here. This is known as the middle temporal gyrus which lies between the superior and inferior temporal sulci on the temporal lobe of the cerebral cortex.

This area has been also linked to facial recognition.

Even a bit further down, we now find this one. This is known as the inferior temporal gyrus. And the inferior temporal gyrus of the temporal lobe is situated below the middle temporal gyrus and is bordered superiorly by the inferior temporal sulcus. This area is associated with the processing of visual stimuli.

Next structure that we’re going to see now, highlighted in green, is known as the temporal pole, which is located on the temporal lobe, as we’ve seen before. This is the anterior end of this lobe, of the temporal lobe.

We’re going to move a little bit more posteriorly to this area that you now see, highlighted in green. This is known as the occipital pole and is located on the occipital lobe of the cerebral cortex. It is the posterior end of the occipital lobe.

Now, on the next image that you see now, this is the right… the lateral right side of the brain, and we are now retracting a few structures here so we can expose this structure here, known as the insula, and we can now see this area, highlighted in green, which is known as the frontal operculum. This is the part of the inferior frontal gyrus of the frontal lobe that covers the insula.

It is located behind the ascending ramus.

Now, we also see another one here, known as the parietal operculum, which the part of the inferior parietal lobe that also covers the insula. It is… it lies above the posterior ramus of the lateral sulcus and extends towards the occiput.

Next in line is also another operculum known as the temporal operculum, which also covers the insula, and it is part of the superior temporal gyrus of the temporal lobe.

We’re moving on to this structure that you see now, highlighted in green, this time, on the left… the lateral left side. We’re also retracting, exposing now one structure that we already talked about briefly. This is known as the insula.

And the insula of the cerebral cortex is located on the floor of the lateral cerebral fossa. It is also one of the lobes of the cerebral hemispheres. It is covered by portions of frontal, parietal, and temporal lobes, called opercula, like we talked about on the previous slides.

This part of the cerebral cortex is associated with cognitive function, perception also, motor control, self-awareness, and consciousness.

Now, let’s take a closer look—a closer look at the different structures of the insula, now seen highlighted in green. This is known as the short gyri of the insula. They are three to four short gyri located on the anterior upper portion of the insula. This is the large part of this structure, of the insula.

The other ones are known as, then, the long gyrus of the insula. And the long gyrus of the insula is located below the short gyrus of the insula, inferior to the central sulcus of this structure. It is slightly smaller than the short gyri of the insula.

Moving on to another structure that we find on the lateral side of the brain, this is known as the anterior ramus of the lateral cerebral sulcus. Now, this structure is a short branch of the lateral sulcus that runs between the frontal operculum and the triangular part of the inferior frontal gyrus.

Next in line is another one that we find here. This structure highlighted in green, known as the posterior ramus of the lateral cerebral sulcus.

Now, this structure is a longer branch of the lateral sulcus. It runs posteriorly between the parietal lobe and the temporal lobe, terminating near the supramarginal gyrus.

Moving on this structure that you now see, highlighted in green, this is also another sulcus known as the superior frontal sulcus.

Now, the superior frontal sulcus is located below the superior frontal gyrus. It separates the superior frontal gyrus from the middle frontal gyrus of the frontal lobe.

Another sulcus that you see a bit below, this is known as the inferior frontal sulcus, which is located below the middle frontal gyrus. It divides the middle frontal and inferior frontal gyri of the frontal lobe.

A bit more posteriorly, we are looking now at the precentral sulcus which lies in front of the precentral gyrus of the frontal lobe. It runs parallel to the central sulcus.

And now, you see the central sulcus which separates the frontal and parietal lobes of the cerebral cortex. It runs between the precentral and postcentral gyri.

The next one, I already briefly mentioned on the previous slide, this one is the postcentral sulcus of the parietal lobe, which is located behind the postcentral gyrus. It runs parallel to, then, the central sulcus, as you can also see here on this image.

Another sulcus to talk about, this one known as the intraparietal sulcus which divides the superior and inferior parietal lobes of the cerebral cortex. It runs somewhat perpendicular to the postcentral sulcus of the parietal lobe.

Next in line, we have this long one known as the superior temporal sulcus, which lies between the superior and middle temporal gyri of the temporal lobe. It runs parallel to the lateral sulcus.

A bit further down, then, we find the inferior temporal sulcus which runs between the middle and inferior temporal gyri of the temporal lobe.

We’re looking now at the insula again because there is a sulcus that we need to remember. This is known as the central sulcus of the insula which runs between the short and long gyri of the insula, separating these two structures.

Like the insula, this sulcus is only visible when the frontal parietal and temporal lobes are retracted to expose it as we see now on this image.

We are now moving on to the last structure on this tutorial, seen now highlighted in green. This is known as the parietooccipital sulcus, seen here running between the parietal and occipital lobes.

Now, from the lateral view, we only see a small portion of the sulcus. This is clearly best seen from the medial aspect, along the medial surface of the cerebral hemisphere, as you can see here. Now, this is the parietooccipital sulcus, dividing the parietal lobe and the occipital lobe.

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