Although there have been many studies of the arterial cerebral blood supply, only seven have described the optic chiasm (OC) blood supply and their results are contradictory. The aim of this study was to analyze the extrinsic and intrinsic OC blood supply on cadaveric specimens using dissections and microcomputer tomography (Micro‐CT). Thirteen human specimens were dissected and the internal or common carotid arteries were injected with red latex, China Ink with gelatin or barium sulfate. Three Micro‐CTs were obtained to reveal the intrinsic blood supply to the OC. The superior hypophyseal arteries (SupHypA) (13/13) and posterior communicating artery (PCoA) (12/13) supplied the pial network on the inferior side of the OC. The first segment of the anterior cerebral artery (ACA) (10/10), SupHypA (7/10), the anterior communicating artery (ACoA) (9/10), and PComA (1/10) supplied the pial network of its superior side. The intrinsic OC blood supply was divided into three networks (two lateral and one central). Capillaries entering the OC originated principally from the inferior pial network. The lateral network capillaries had the same orientation as the visual lateral pathways, but the central network was not correlated with the nasal fibers crossing into the OC. There was no anastomosis in the pial or intrinsic networks. Only SupHypA, PCoA, ACoA, and ACA were involved in the OC blood supply. Because there was no extrinsic or intrinsic anastomosis, all arteries should be preserved. Tumor compression of the inferior intrinsic arterial network could contribute to visual defects. Clin. Anat. 31:432–440, 2018. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Clinical Anatomy – Wiley
Published: Jan 1, 2018
Keywords: ; ;
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