|Precursor||aortic arch 1|
|Source||external carotid artery|
|Branches||1st part: anterior tympanic - deep auricular - middle meningeal - superior tympanic artery - accessory meningeal - inferior alveolar|
2nd part: Posterior deep temporal artery - Pterygoid branches - masseteric - buccinator - Anterior deep temporal artery
3rd part: posterior superior alveolar - infraorbital - descending palatine - artery of the pterygoid canal - sphenopalatine
The maxillary artery supplies deep structures of the face. It branches from the external carotid artery just deep to the neck of the mandible.
The maxillary artery, the larger of the two terminal branches of the external carotid artery, arises behind the neck of the mandible, and is at first imbedded in the substance of the parotid gland; it passes forward between the ramus of the mandible and the sphenomandibular ligament, and then runs, either superficial or deep to the lateral pterygoid muscle, to the pterygopalatine fossa.
It supplies the deep structures of the face, and may be divided into mandibular, pterygoid, and pterygopalatine portions.
The first or mandibular or bony portion passes horizontally forward, between the neck of the mandible and the sphenomandibular ligament, where it lies parallel to and a little below the auriculotemporal nerve; it crosses the inferior alveolar nerve, and runs along the lower border of the lateral pterygoid muscle.
The second or pterygoid or muscular portion runs obliquely forward and upward under cover of the ramus of the mandible and insertion of the temporalis, on the superficial (very frequently on the deep) surface of the lateral pterygoid muscle; it then passes between the two heads of origin of this muscle and enters the fossa.
The third or pterygopalatine or pterygomaxillary portion lies in the pterygopalatine fossa in relation with the pterygopalatine ganglion. This is considered the terminal branch of the maxillary artery.