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Revista chilena de anatomía

versión impresa ISSN 0716-9868

Rev. chil. anat. v.15 n.1 Temuco  1997

http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0716-98681997000100004 

RELATIONSHIP OF THE FACIAL VEIN WITH THE SUBMANDIBULAR GLAND

RELACION DE LA VENA FACIAL CON LA GLANDULA SUBMANDIBULAR

 

* Sonia Lucy Molinari
** João Adolfo Caldas Navarro
* Marcílio Hubner de Miranda Neto
*** Liberato João Alfonso DiDio
**** Renato Paulo Chopard

* Department of Morphophysiological Science - Universidade Estadual de Maringá, Paraná, Brazil.
** Departament of Anatomy - Faculdade de Odontologia de Baurú-USP, Estado de São Paulo, Brazil
*** Professor Emeritus. Medical College of Ohio. Visiting Professor, Escola Paulista de Medicina and Professor of Anatomy, Faculdade de Medicina, Santo Amaro, São Paulo,SP, Brazil
**** Departament of Anatomy - Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.

SUMMARY: This study was carried out to verify the course of the facial vein. Left and right facial veins of 50 adult male corpses previously maintained in formaldehyde were dissected and analyzed microscopically as well as under stereomicroscope. In the neck, in relation to the submandibular gland it was found: a) over its lateral surface, in both antimeres , 20 cases (40%); unilaterally to the right, 4 cases (8%) and to the left, 11 cases (22%); b) posterior to the gland, in both antimeres, 9 cases (18%); unilaterally to the right, 9 cases (18%) and to the left, 6 cases (12%); c) medial to the gland, in both antimeres, 2 cases (4%) and d) not directly related to the submandibular gland, in both antimeres, 2 cases (4%); and only in the right antimere, 4 cases (8%) were found.

KEY WORDS: 1. Facial vein; 2. Submandibular region; 3. Submandibular gland.

INTRODUCTION

The facial vein is one the main routes of blood drainage from the face. It begins near the medial palpebral comissure and, with descending and obliquous course passes among the bundles of muscular fibers of the orbital portion of the orbicular muscle of the eye and of the levator muscle of the superior lip and nasal wing. Laterally to this latter structure, the facial vein passes under the major and minor zigomatic muscles, deepens on the ball adipose and then emerges, passing anteriorly to the masseter muscle (SAPPEY, 1853; FORT, 1902; POIRIER et al., 1908; BRUNO, 1924; ROUVIÈRE, 1926; TESTUT & LATARJET, 1954; TESTUT & JACOB, 1981; SALASCHE et al., 1988; MOLINARI, 1992). This course of the facial vein is discussed and, as observed on the literature and on the dissections we have carried out, does not show variations. Concerning the submandibular region, the authors consulted generally report only that the facial vein passes over the surface of the submandibular gland (SAPPEY, 1853; FORT, 1902; ROUVIÈRE, 1926; TESTUT & LATARJET, 1954; ORTS-LLORCA, 1962; SALASCHE et al., 1988). Because of the scarcity of anatomical information and intending to contribute with data which would support surgical procedures on the submandibular region, we carried out the present work with purpose of verifying the relationship of the facial vein with the submandibular gland.

MATERIAL AND METHOD

The right and left facial veins of 50 adult male corpses of different racial groups were used. The facial veins were macroscopically dissected after corpses had been fixed in 10% formaldehyde solution. The course of the facial vein was described and documented through photographs ( Nikon camera N2020, with Medical Nikkor 110mm lens). Data referring to the anatomical variations were subjected to the calculation of the percentage standard error through the formula:

s: Öp . q
         N

S: percentage standard error
p: percentage
q: difference of percentage to 100
N:number of observations

RESULTS

After the facial vein crosses the mandibular body it shows different courses in relation to the submandibular gland. In 33 cases (66% ± 6.69) a bilateral symmetry was observed, and in 17 cases (34% ± 6.69) differences exist on the course of the facial vein of each antimere of a same individual.

Among the cases of bilateral symmetry it was verified that the facial vein can be located:

a) over the lateral surface of the submandibular gland, as it was observed in 20 cases (40% ± 6.92). In four of these the facial vein causes the formation of a pronounced sulcus on that surface (Fig. 1).

b) posterior to the submandibular gland in 9 cases (18% ± 5.43) (Fig. 2).

c) medial to the submandibular gland in 2 cases (4% ± 2.77) (Fig. 3).

In 2 cases (4% ± 2.77) the facial vein does not relate directely with the submandibular gland; after the mandibular body it courses posteriorly, crosses the masseter and sternocleidomastoid muscles and ends on the external jugular vein (Fig. 4).

On the 17 cases (34% ± 6.69) where a bilateral symmetry does not exist between the course of the facial vein and the submandibular gland, we observed the following:

a ) In 9 cases (18% ± 5.43) the right facial vein is posterior to the gland, while the left facial vein passes over the gland’s lateral surface.

b) In 4 cases (8% ± 3.83) the right facial vein passes over the lateral surface of the submandibular gland, while the left facial veincourses posteriorly to it.

c) In 2 cases (4% ± 2.77) the right facial vein does not relate with the submandibular gland, while the left facial veincourses posteriorly to it.

d) In 2 cases (4% ± 2.77) the right facial vein does not relate with the submandibular gland, while the left facial vein passes over its lateral surface.

Adding the cases of bilateral symmetry with those with no symmetry, we verified that the facial veins pass over the lateral surface of the submandibular gland in 24 cases (48% ± 7.06) on the right and in 31 cases (62% ± 6.86) on the left; posteriorly to the gland in 18 cases (36% ± 6.78) on the right and in 15 cases (30% ± 6.48) on the left; and medially to the gland in 2 cases (4% ± 2.77) on the right and 2 cases (4% ± 2.77) on the left. In 6 cases on the right (12% ± 4.59) and 2 cases on the left (4% ± 2.77) the facial vein does not relate with the submandibular gland.

DISCUSSION

After crossing the mandibular body, the facial vein shows many variations, including differences between antimeres. Concerning this issue, the descriptions of the various authors are confliting.

Concerning the relationship with the submandibular gland, we found the facial veins of booth antimeres passing over its surface in 20 cases (40%), and unilaterally in 4 cases (8%) on the right and 11 (22%) on the left. This course is described generically by SAPPEY (1853), FORT (1902), ROUVIÈRE (1926), BARNHILL & MELLINGER (1940), TESTUT & LATARJET (1954), GOSS (1977), HOLLINSHEAD (1980), TESTUT & JACOB (1981), FIGÚN & GARINO (1988) and SALASCHE et al. (1988).

The presence of a sulcus over the lateral surface of the submandibular gland where the facial vein is located, is stressed by TESTUT & LATARJET (1954). This sulcus was observed only in 4 of the studied cases and therefore, is an infrequente variation, not subjected to generalization. ORTS-LLORCA (1962) and WARWICK & WILLIAMS (1973) on the other hand, only comment that the facial vein rests superficially on the gland.

We also found the facial veins of both antimeres passing posteriorly to the submandibular gland in 9 cases (18%); unilaterally on the right in 9 cases (18%) and on the left in 6 cases (12%); and medially to the gland in 2 cases (4%). These courses are not mentioned by the authors consulted.

We observed, in both antimeres of the 2 corpses (4%), and in 4 cases (8%) only on the right antimere, that the facial vein, at the level of the mandibular body, courses backwards and crosses the masseter muscle, thus not relating to the submandibular gland, resembling the course described by MADEIRA & HETEM (1971) in 6/70 facial veins of human fetuses.

With the results of this investigations, we try to call the attention of professionals to the anatomical variations verified on the course of the facial vein on the submandibular region.

LEGEND OF FIGURES

 

Fig. 1 - Antero-lateral view of face and neck of the right antimere. Relation of the facial vein (F) with lateral surface of the submandibular gland (G). Anterior margin of masseter muscle (M), facial artery (A) and internal jugular vein (J).

Fig. 2 - Lateral view of face and neck of left antimere. Course of the facial vein (F) posterior to the submandibular gland (G). Parotid gland (P), submandibular limphonode (L) and internal jugular vein (J).

Fig. 3 - Antero-lateral view of face and neck of left antimere. Course of the facial vein (F) located medially to the submandibular gland (G). Facial artery (A) and submandibular limphonode (L).

Fig. 4 - Antero-lateral view of face and neck of right antimere. Facial vein (F), external jugular vein (V), masseter muscle (M) and sternocleidomastoid muscle (S).

RESUMEN: La vena facial constituye una de las principales vías de drenaje sanguíneo del rostro. En su trayecto por el rostro, prácticamente no presenta variaciones, sin embargo, en relación a la región submandibular, informaciones genéricas son encontradas en la literatura. Por lo tanto, el objetivo de este trabajo fue verificar la relación de la vena facial con la glándula submandibular. Las venas faciales derecha e izquierda de 50 cadáveres adultos, de sexo masculino, previamente formolizados, fueron disecadas y analizadas macroscópicamente y bajo estereomicroscopio. En el cuello, en relación a la glándula submandibular, fue encontrada: a) sobre su superficie lateral, en ambos antímeros, 20 casos (40%); unilateralmente a la derecha, 4 casos (8%) y a la izquierda, 11 casos (22%); b) posteriormente a la glándula, en ambos antímeros, 9 casos (18%); unilateralmente a la derecha, 9 casos (18%) y a la izquierda, 6 casos (12%): c) medial a la glándula, en ambos antímeros, 2 casos (4%); y d) no relacionándose directamente con la glándula submandibular, en ambos antímeros, 2 casos (4%) y apenas en el antímero derecho, 4 casos (8%). Verificamos, por lo tanto, variaciones con respecto al trayecto recorrido por la vena facial en la región submandibular.

PALABRAS CLAVE: 1. Vena facial; 2. Región submandibular; 3. Glándula submandibular.

REFERENCES        [ Links ]

BRUNO, G. Ricerche col metodo statistico sella morfologia delle vene della faccia e del collo neel’Uomo. Parte prima. Le vene dell’adulto. Arch. Ital. Anat. Embriol., 21: 273-93, 1924.        [ Links ]

FIGÚN, M.E.; GARINO, R.R. Anatomia odontológica funcional e aplicada. 2. ed. São Paulo, Panamericana, 1988.         [ Links ]

FORT, J. A. Anatomie descriptive et dissection. 6.ed. Paris, Vigot Fréres, 1902. v. II. pp 1145-51

GOSS, C.M. (ed.) Anatomia. 29. ed. Rio de Janeiro, Guanabara Koogan, 1977. p 560        [ Links ]

HOLLINSHEAD, W. H. Livro texto de anatomia humana. São Paulo, Harpper & Row Brasil, 1980. pp 816-7.        [ Links ]

INTERNATIONAL ANATOMICAL NOMENCLATURE COMMITTEE. Nomina anatomica. 5. ed. São Paulo, Medsi, 1987.        [ Links ]

MADEIRA, M.C. & HETEM, S. Dados morfológicos sobre as veias retromandibular, facial, facial comum, jugular anterior e tronco tíreo-línguo-facial em fetos e crianças. Arq. Anat. Antropol., 35: 211-42, 1971.        [ Links ]

MOLINARI, S. L. Aspectos macro e microscópicos da veia facial de indivíduos humanos. Botucatu, 1992. 98 p. Tese (Instituto de Biociências da Universidade Estadual Paulista).        [ Links ]

ORTS-LLORCA, F. Anatomia humana. 2.ed. Barcelona, Científico-Médica, 1962. v.3.

POIRIER, P. ; CHARPY, A. & CUNÉO, B. Abrégé d’anatomie. Paris, Masson et Cie, 1908. Tomo II. pp 701-4 and 719-20.

ROUVIÈRE, H. Anatomia humana descriptiva e topográfica. 2. ed. Madrid, Bailley-Bailliere, 1926. v.1. p 236

SALASCHE, S.J. ; BERNSTEIN, G. & SENKARIK, M. Surgical anatomy of the skin. California, Appleton & Lange, 1988. pp 134-135        [ Links ]

SAPPEY, C. Traité d’anatomie descriptive. Paris, Masson, 1853. v.1. p 723

TESTUT, L. & JACOB, O. Tratado de anatomia topográfica con aplicaciones medico-quirúrgicas. 8.ed. Barcelona, Salvat, 1981. pp 243, 635        [ Links ]

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WARWICK, R. & WILLIAMS, P.L. (eds.) Gray’s anatomy. 35. ed. London, Longman, 1973. p 650        [ Links ]

Dirección para correspondencia:
Profa. Dra. Sonia Lucy Molinari
Universidade Estadual de Maringá
Departamento de Ciências Morfofisiológicas
Av. Colombo, 5790 Bloco H-79
CEP: 87020-900
Maringá - Paraná
BRASIL

Recibido : 23-12-1996
Aceptado : 20-03-1997

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