Parotid duct

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Parotid duct
Right parotid gland. Deep and anterior aspects. (Parotid duct labeled at center left.)
Dissection, showing salivary glands of right side. (Parotid duct visible at center.)
Latin Ductus parotideus
MeSH D018987
TA A05.1.02.007
FMA 10420
Anatomical terminology
[edit on Wikidata]

The parotid duct or Stensen duct is a duct and the route that saliva takes from the major salivary gland, the parotid gland into the mouth.[1]


It is named after Nicolas Steno (1638–1686), a Danish anatomist credited with its detailed description in 1660.


The parotid duct is formed when several interlobular ducts—the largest ducts inside the parotid gland—join. It emerges from the gland and runs forward along the lateral side of the masseter muscle. In this course, the duct is surrounded by the buccal fat pad.[2] It takes a steep turn at the border of the masseter and passes through the buccinator muscle, opening into the vestibule of the mouth, the region of the mouth between the cheek and the gums, at the parotid papilla, which lies across the second superior molar tooth.[3]

The buccinator acts as a valve that prevents air forcing into the duct, which would cause pneumoparotitis.[4] Running along with the duct superiorly is the transverse facial artery and upper buccal nerve; running along with the duct inferiorly is the lower buccal nerve.

The exit of the parotid ducts can be felt as small bumps (Papillae) on both sides of the mouth, and are usually positioned next to the maxillary second molars.

Clinical relevance

Blockage, whether caused by salivary duct stones or external compression, may cause pain and swelling of the parotid gland (parotitis).

Koplik's spots which are pathognomonic of measles are found near the opening of the parotid duct.

Additional images

See also


  1. ^ Ten Cate's Oral Histology, Nanci, Elsevier, 2013, page 255
  2. ^ Latarjet, Michel; Ruiz Liard, Alfredo (2005). Human Anatomy (Spanish Edition). Editorial Médica Panamericana. ISBN 978-950-06-1368-2.
  3. ^ Illustrated Dental Embryology, Histology, and Anatomy, Bath-Balogh and Fehrenbach, Elsevier, 2011, page 135
  4. ^ Faizal B, Chandran MP (2012). "Pneumoparotitis" (PDF). Amrita Journal of Medicine. 8 (2): 1–44. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2015-12-11.

External links

Retrieved from ""
This content was retrieved from Wikipedia :
This page is based on the copyrighted Wikipedia article "Parotid duct"; it is used under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License (CC-BY-SA). You may redistribute it, verbatim or modified, providing that you comply with the terms of the CC-BY-SA