Author: Alexandra Sieroslawska MD•Reviewer: Dimitrios Mytilinaios MD, PhDLast reviewed: September 30, 2021Reading time: 7 minutes


The mandible is the only bone in the whole skull that doesn’t articulate with its nearby skull skeletal via sutures. When the skull is it was observed purely as a bony structure, there is nothing anatomically stop the rest of the skull and also the mandible together.

You are watching: What does the mandibular condyle articulate with

This bone is additionally known as the lower jaw and the articulates dentally through the upper jaw or the maxilla in the viscerocranium via the teeth when the mouth is closed. It likewise articulates come the neurocranium via the temporal bone, creating the temporomandibular joint (TMJ).

Key facts about the mandible
BodyBorders: - superior (alveolar) - consists of 16 cavities for the reduced teeth- inferior - free; medially is the ar of attachment for the digastric muscleSurfaces:- inner - genial tubercles, digastric fossa, mylohyoid line- outer - mandibular symphysis, psychological foramen, outside oblique line
RamusCondylar process - articulates through temporal bone -> temporomandibular jointCoronoid process - attachment because that temporalis muscleOuter surface - attachment because that masseter muscleInner surface - mandibular foramen
ForaminaMandibular foramen - inner surface of the ramus; passage because that the inferior alveolar nerve and artery to the mandibular canal i m sorry exits through the mental foramenMental foramen - on the external surface the the body; allows the inferior mandibular nerve and also artery to departure the mandibular canal, when they come to be mental nerve and also artery
Clinical relationsAlveolar bone resorption, condylar fractures, tooth aplasia, osteoradionecrosis, osteomyelitis, cysts

This post will discuss the anatomy that the mandible.

+ present all


The mandible is a singular bone that has actually a distinctive horse-shoe shape and also is symmetrical on both sides. The is the moving component of the jaws once the body is involved in the feeding process and for that factor all the muscles that mastication consisting of the medial and lateral pterygoid muscles, the temporal muscle and also the masseter muscle attach to it.

The mandible is only one of the skull bones. Exactly how well carry out you recognize the others? test yourself through our skull bones quizzes and diagrams!

The lower jaw consists of no less than five individual parts that intramembranously ossify together, especially around Meckel’s cartilage.




The ramus is the 2nd largest part of the mandible ~ the body, and also it extends cranially native the angle the the mandible. This angle, also known together gonial angle, can selection from 110-130 degrees and can vary in between age, sex and also ethnicity. That is typically everted in males, however frequently inverted in females. Various structures attach themselves come both the lateral and also medial walls of the ramus, including the masseter muscle laterally and the medial pterygoid muscle, and also the sphenomandibular ligament to the medial side.

At the many superior allude of the ramus, it divides into two processes, which room separated through a mandibular notch. Anteriorly, sit the coronoid process and posteriorly, the condylar process, i m sorry articulates v the temporal bone.

Coronoid process

The coronoid process, as previously mentioned, is the foremost structure at the head that the ramus, attaches come the temporalis muscle, which is utilized throughout mastication. Although the is not directly component of the temporomandibular joint, it still aids the various functions of the jaws, such together opening and also closing, due to its proximity to the TMJ and also it involvement through its adjacent structures.

Condylar process


The condylar process is the bony extrusion behind the coronoid process, which develops the lower bony ingredient of the temporomandibular joint, in addition to the temporal bone. It is formed in different ways to the coronoid process, due to the fact that it has a much much more slender stalk with a higher protuberance to top it off. This architecture creates a neck because that the condyle and allows the lateral pterygoid muscle to attach to the pterygoid fovea top top it.


The body that the mandible is a big and practically rectangular facet that sits parallel or perpendicular to the floor, depending on when the human being is was standing upright or lie down flat respectively. This part of the bone has the many anatomical landmarks of the mandible, i beg your pardon are questioned below, as they are component of the mandible’s osseous development.

Alveolar process

The last component of the mandible is the alveolar process. This is maybe the most important component of the bone in that is entirety, due to the fact that it holds the this via a share mechanism known as gomphosis. The teeth room responsible because that biting, chewing, cutting and grinding, as well as speech and also pronunciation and also facial organization support.

This component of the mandible expand superiorly native the body and also consists of two bony bowl including a thick buccal part and a slim lingual part. Symmetrically, each next of the mandible has five main teeth and seven to eight long-term teeth, depending on whether the wisdom teeth or 3rd molars kind during embryonic development.

If you want to learn around the mandible making use of videos, illustrations and quizzes, click the complying with study unit:

Mandible discover study unit

The medial side of the ramus includes the mandibular foramen, i beg your pardon encapsulates the inferior alveolar nerve and its branches. The lateral body of the mandible includes the mental foramen anteriorly, which homes the mental nerve and its equivalent vessels.

Also ~ above the lateral side, the external oblique line can it is in seen. Top top the medial next of the mandible there are seven major structures that are worth noting, including the superior and inferior genial tubercles and also the digastric fossa, i m sorry are uncovered in the midline, and the mylohyoid line, whose posterior border permits for the attachments of the pterygomandibular raphe.

The mylohyoid heat divides the submandibular and the sublingual fossae.

Clinical aspects

Clinically, there are many varieties of pathological problems within the mandible. Here, the most typical bony disturbances have been noted:

Alveolar bone resorption occurs as soon as the teeth room lost; over there is a absence of structures to support the bone and also there is increased pressure upon the bone due to chronic denture wearing.Intra- and also extracapsular condylar fractures are the most frequent mandibular fractures and usually result due to car crashes or indirect force due to violence.Other mandibular fracture areas encompass the body, the angle, the symphysis, the ramus, the alveolus and also the coronoid procedure (in decreasing stimulate of frequency).Osteoradionecrosis is a disorder that occurs as result of cancer treatment and the bone disintegrates due to the fact that of radiation.Osteomyelitis is an infection that can reason chronic sequestrations and also bone disintegration within the mandible. That is irreversible and also the mandible often needs resecting.Cyst formation most regularly happens in the mandible wherein the molars sit. There space many types of cyst yet the typical symptom is huge bone resorption and bone weakening if the cyst is left untreated.



Neil S. Norton, Ph.D. And Frank H. Netter, MD, Netter’s Head and also Neck Anatomy because that Dentistry, second Edition, Elsevier Saunders, chapter 2 Osteology, page 45 and also 55.


Mandible - Yousun Koh

Mandible: want to learn an ext about it?

Our engaging videos, interactive quizzes, in-depth articles and HD atlas are right here to acquire you top results faster.

See more: When Was The Song Fireflies Made, Fireflies (Owl City Song)

What carry out you like to find out with?


“I would honestly say the cut my study time in half.”–Read more.

Kim Bengochea, Regis University, Denver

Register nowand grab your free ultimate anatomy research guide!