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Swiss Dent J. 2018 May 14;128(5):382-392.

The Face – A Vascular Perspective. A literature review

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Department of Oral Surgery and Stomatology, School of Dental Medicine, University of Bern, Switzerland
Department of Kinesiology and Rehabilitation Science, University of Hawai’i, Hono­lulu, USA
Department of Anatomy, Biochemistry and Physiology, John A. Burns School of Medi­cine, University of Hawai’i, Honolulu, USA


Vascular supply is key for maintenance of healthy tissue conditions but also with regard to healing following trauma or therapeutic interventions. The face is probably the most exposed part of the body and any changes of vascularity are readily visible (skin blanching, ecchymosis, hematoma, edema). With regard to the arterial supply, all vessels reaching the facial skin originate from the bilateral common carotid arteries. The ophthal­mic artery is considered the major arterial shunt between the internal and external carotid artery systems. Main arterial contributors to the face include the facial, transverse facial, and infraorbital arteries. In general, homonymous veins accompany the arteries, but there are some exceptions (inferior ophthalmic vein, retromandibular vein). Furthermore, the facial vein demonstrates a consistently more posterior course compared to the facial artery. Lymphatic vessels including lymph nodes play an important role for facial drainage.


Anatomy; Face; Vascular supply; Arteries; Veins; Lymphatics; External/internal carotid arteries

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