Maxillary Artery to Middle Cerebral Artery Bypass: A Novel Technique for Exposure of the Maxillary Artery

Document Type



OBJECTIVE: To define the maxillary artery (MaxA) anatomy and present a novel technique for exposing and preparing this vessel as a bypass donor. METHODS: Cadaveric and radiologic studies were used to define the MaxA anatomy and show a novel method for harvesting and preparing it for extracranial to intracranial bypass. RESULTS: The MaxA runs parallel to the frontal branch of the superficial temporal artery and is located on average 24.8 ± 3.8 mm inferior to the midpoint of the zygomatic arch. The pterygoid segment of the MaxA is most appropriate for bypass with a maximal diameter of 2.5 ± 0.4 mm. The pterygoid segment can be divided into a main trunk and terminal part based on anatomic features and use in the bypass procedure. The main trunk of the pterygoid segment can be reached extracranially, either by following the deep temporal arteries downward toward their origin from the MaxA or by following the sphenoid groove downward to the terminal part of the pterygoid segment, which can be followed proximally to expose the entire MaxA. In comparison, the prebifurcation diameter of the superficial temporal artery is 1.9 ± 0.5 mm. The average lengths of the mandibular and pterygoid MaxA segments are 6.3 ± 2.4 and 6.7 ± 3.3 mm, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: The MaxA can be exposed without zygomatic osteotomies or resection of the middle fossa floor. Anatomic landmarks for exposing the MaxA include the anterior and posterior deep temporal arteries and the pterygomaxillary fissure.

Medical Subject Headings

Cerebral Revascularization (methods); Dissection (methods); Humans; Maxillary Artery (anatomy & histology, surgery); Middle Cerebral Artery (anatomy & histology, surgery); Minimally Invasive Surgical Procedures (methods)

Publication Date


Publication Title

World neurosurgery





First Page


Last Page


PubMed ID


Digital Object Identifier (DOI)