Background to disease of the pharynx

  • A. G. D. Maran
Part of the The New Medicine book series (NEME, volume 4)


The pharynx develops from the endodermal lining of the foregut. It is a fibromuscular tube that extends from the base of the skull to the lower border of the cricoid cartilage, where it is then continuous with the oesophagus. At this cricopharyngeal sphincter it is 2.5 cm (1 inch) wide — the narrowest and least dilatable part of the alimentary tract. A foreign body that passes through the cricopharyngeal sphincter is not likely to be arrested further on.


Soft Palate Hyoid Bone Cricoid Cartilage Posterior Pharyngeal Wall Retropharyngeal Lymph Node 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Copyright information

© MTP Press Limited 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. G. D. Maran
    • 1
  1. 1.The Royal InfirmaryEdinburghScotland

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