Type of Article:  Original Research

Volume 5; Issue 4.1 (October 2017)

Page No.: 4474-4477

DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.16965/ijar.2017.377


T. Vasantha kumar 1, M. Anuradha *2.

1 Professor and HOD, Department of Anatomy, Stanley Medical College, Chennai, Tamilnadu, India.

*2 Assistant Professor, Department of Anatomy, Stanley Medical College, Chennai, Tamilnadu, India.

Address for Correspondence: Dr. M. Anuradha, Assistant professor, Dept of Anatomy Govt Stanley medical college, Chennai-01, Tamilnadu, India. Ph no-9488480732 E-Mail: dranurac@yahoo.com


Background: The hypoglossal canal is a bony canal in the occipital bone of the skull. The hypoglossal nerve is the twelth cranial nerve passes through the hypoglossal canal (HC) that supplies motor innervations to the tongue.

Materials and Methods: A total of 50 adult dry skulls were examined from the department of anatomy, Stanley Medical College, Chennai, Tamilnadu.

Results: Out of 50 skulls studied, double hypoglossal canal was seen in 10 (20%) skulls, in which 7 (14%) specimens had unilateral while 3 (6%) specimens had bilateral double hypoglossal canal. Double hypoglossal canal was more common in right side. The mean length of hypoglossal canal on the right and left were 12.45mm and 12.51mm. The mean diameter of intra and extracranial end of hypoglossal canal were 7.48mm and 7.59mm respectively.

Conclusion: Hence, the knowledge about its morphometric dimensions of hypoglossal canal is very important for neurosurgeons & radiologists.

Key words: Hypoglossal canal, Skull, hypoglossal nerve.


  1. Standring S. Head and Neck in grays anatomy: the anatomical basis of clinical practices, S. Standring, H. Ellis, J. C. Healy, D. Jhonson and A. Williams, Eds.; Churchill Livingtone, New York, USA, 40th ed; 2008:415:460.
  2. Gisel A. Die venen im Canalis nervi hypoglossl zeitschr f Anat u Entwickl 1956;19:257-258.
  3. Zaidi SHH, Gupta R, Usman N. A study of hypoglossal canal in north Indian crania. J Anat Soc India. 2011;60(2):224-6.
  4. Canalis RF, Martin N, Black K, Ammirati M, Cheatham M, Bloch J, et al. Lateral approach to tumors of the craniovertebral junction. Laryngoscope. 1993;103:343-9.
  5. Tanzer A. Roentgen diagnosis of hypoglossal nerve canal. Radiol. 1975;18:42-8.
  6. Gapert R, Black S, Last J. Sex determination from the foramen magnum: Discriminant function analysis in an eighteenth & nineteenth century British sample. Int J Legal Med. 2009;123:25-33.
  7. Karasu A, Cansever T, Batay F, Sabanci PA, AlMefty O. The microsurgical anatomy of the hypoglossal canal.Surg Radiol Anat. 2009;31:363-7.
  8. Wanebo JE, Chicoine MR. Quantitative analysis of the transcondylar approach to the foramen magnum.Neurosurgery. 2001;49:934-943.
  9. Katsuta T, Matsushima T, Wen HT et al., Trajectory of the hypoglossal canal: significance for the transcondylar approach. Neurol Med Chir (Tokyo).2000;40:206-210.
  10. Wysocki J, Kobryn H, Bubrowski M, Kwiatkowski J, Reymond J, Skarzynska B. The morphology of the hypoglossal canal and its size in relation to skull capacity in man and other mammal species. Folia Morphol. (Warsz). 2004;63:11–17.
  11. Kaur J, Srivastava D, Singh D, Raheja S. The study of hyperostosic variants: significance of hyperostotic variants of human skulls in anthropology. Ana Cell Biol. 2012;45:268-73.
  12. Jacob M, Avadhani R, Nair B, Nallathamby R, Soman MA. An original study on antomical variations of hypoglossal canal. Int J Health Sci Res. 2014;4(12):339-41.
  13. Bhuller A, Sanudo JR, Choi D, Abrahams PH. Intracranial course and relations of the hypoglossal nerve: an anatomic study. Surg Radiol Anat. 1998;20:109-12.
  14. Osunwoke EA, Okoseimiema SC, Yorkhum KL, Uzomba GC. A study on the dimensions of hypoglossal canal in Southern Nigerian Crania. J Biol Agricult Health. 2014;4(4):78-81.
  15. Muthukumar N, Swaminathan R, Venkatesh G et al., A morphometric analysis of the foramen magnum region as it relates to the transcondylar approach.Acta Neurochir (Wien). 2005;147:889-895.
  16. Hadley KS, Shelton C. Infratemporal fossa approach to the hypoglossal canal: practical landmarks for elusive anatomy. Laryngoscope. 2004;114:1648-1651.
  17. Kizilkanat ED, Boyan N, Soames R, Oguz O. Morphometry of the Hypoglossal Canal, OccipitalCondyle & Foramen Magnum. Neurosurg Q.2006;16(3):121-125.
  18. Berge JK, Bergman RA. Variations in size and in symmetry of foramina of the human skull. Clin Anat.2001;14:406-413.

Cite this article: T. Vasantha kumar, M. Anuradha. MORPHOMETRIC STUDY OF HYPOGLOSSAL CANAL IN HUMAN ADULT DRY SKULLS. Int J Anat Res 2017;5(4.1):4474-4477. DOI: 10.16965/ijar.2017.377