PMID: 3739599Jan 1, 1986Paper

Mental foramen and mental nerve: changes with age

Acta Anatomica
A GershensonE Luchansky


In a study of 525 dry mandibles and dissections in 50 cadavers, the mental foramen (MF) was found: single in 94.67% of the cases and multiple in 5.33%. Its shape was round in 34.48% with an average diameter of 1.68 mm and oval in 65.52% with an average long diameter of 2.37 mm. In 43.66% the MF was located in front of the apex of the root of the second premolar. In children before tooth eruption, the MF is somewhat closer to the alveolar margin; during the eruption period, the MF descends to half way between the margins, and in adults with the teeth preserved, the MF is somewhat closer to the inferior border. With loss of teeth and bone resorption the MF moves upwards closer to the alveolar border. In extreme cases of resorption the MF and the adjacent part of the mandibular canal are open at the alveolar margin. In the dissections the findings were similar. The mental nerve emerged from the MF closer to or at the alveolar border, according to the degree of resorption. In extreme degrees of resorption, the mental nerve and the final part of the inferior alveolar nerve were found directly under the gums. In these cases, the vestibular grooves became very shallow, and the mucosa passed directly from the cheeks over the alveolar r...Continue Reading


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