Author: Lorenzo Crumbie MBBS, BSc•Reviewer: Dimitrios Mytilinaios MD, PhDLast reviewed: October 28, 2021Reading time: 12 minutes

You are watching: Paramedian branches of basilar artery


The basilar artery is a fairly large, robust blood vessel situated in the posterior cranial fossa. It is the main blood vessel that creates the posterior circulation that the brain.

This is one of two arterial circuits (the other being the anterior circulation) that delivers approximately 15% that the total cardiac output to the brain tissue. This high demand for oxygenated blood is based upon the diverse physiological features that the brain executes top top a day-to-day basis. An occlusion the the basilar artery deserve to have debilitating implications, such together speech difficulties, intuitive disturbances, cranial nerve palsies and altered consciousness. 

Key facts around the basilar artery
OriginUnion the the vertebral arteries in ~ the pontomedullary junction
CourseAlong the basilar groove ~ above the ventral surface of the pons in the pontine cistern
TerminationBifurcates into the combine posterior cerebral arteries
BranchesAnterior inferior cerebellar arteryInternal hear (labyrinthine)arterySuperior cerebellar artery

This write-up will testimonial the gross anatomy and advancement of the basilar artery, consisting of the course of its branches. Clinical information about lesions of the basilar artery will additionally be included.

BranchesClinical significance
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The basilar artery is a big vessel the ascends follow me the ventral surface ar of the pons. It originates in the midline in ~ the pontomedullary junction from the union of the vertebral arteries. The vessel then travels in a fairly shallow groove on the pons recognized as the basilar groove, within the pontine cistern. The lower fifty percent of the bony clivus is ventral to the basilar artery. Consequently, it is described as the basilar part of the occipital bone. 

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Basilar artery, that branches and other arteries of the brain - diagram

Along that is course, the basilar artery gives off five major branches. This are:

anterior inferior cerebellar, 
internal auditory (labyrinthine), superior cerebellar, pontine and posteromedial arteries.  

The vessel terminates in ~ a bifurcation where it offers off the paired posterior cerebral arteries that contribute to the circle the Willis.