Temporal Fossa

Temporal Fossa Definition

The Temporal Fossa is a shallow depression on the temporal region. It is the space on the side of the cranium held by temporal lines. It terminates below at the Zygomatic arch level.

Temporal Fossa Anatomy

The Temporal Fossa is made up of the temporal bone, the parietal bone, the frontal bone and the sphenoid bone. These bones contribute to its concave wall. The Temporal Fossa is superior to the Infratemporal Fossa.

Temporal Fossa Location

The Temporal Fossa is located in the human skull. It is found on the shallow depression on the side of the skull.

Temporal Fossa Location

Temporal Fossa Location

Temporal Fossa Contents

The following are the contents of The Temporal Fossa:-


The Temporal Fossa contains four branches of nerves from four different nerve bundles. These branches include a branch of mandibular nerve (the nerve that supplies sensory fibers to the lower jaw, the floor of the mouth, the tongue and the teeth), the anterior and the posterior branch of the temporal nerve and the temporal branch of the facial nerve.


The temporal muscle originates from the Temporal Fossa. It originates from the anterior, posterior and superior borders of the Temporal Fossa. It resides within its concavity because the muscle fibers move closer to the point of insertion, that lies beneath the Zygomatic arch (the bony arch at the outer border of the eye socket, that is formed by the alliance of the cheekbone and the Zygomatic process of the Temporal bone).

Blood Vessels

The superior temporal artery( a terminal branch of the exterior carotid artery) courses above the superficial temporal fascia. This branches off the medial temporal artery to the temporal muscle, along with two smaller arteries to the scalp( parietal and frontal nerves). This artery is accompanied by the superior temporal vain. This vein runs between the layers of temporal fascia.

Temporal Fossa Boundaries

The following are the boundaries of the Temporal Fossa:-

Medial: OS Frontale, OS Parietale, OS Temporate, OS Sphenoidale, OS Occipitale. These are the bones of the neurocranium.

Lateral: Temporal Fascia.

Anterior: Posterior surface of the frontal process of the Zygomatic bone and the posterior surface of the Zygomatic process of the frontal bone.

Inferior: Zygomatic arch laterally and by the infratemporal crest of the greater wing of the sphenoid medially.

Superior: A pair of Temporal lines( inferior and superior temporal lines), that arch across the skull from the Zygomatic process of the frontal bone to the supramastoid crest of the temporal bone.

Temporal Fossa Pictures

Image of Temporal Fossa

Picture of Temporal Fossa

Last updated on February 12th, 2018 at 10:25 am

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