Laryngeal cartilages

Epiglottis consists of an elastic cartilage that enters the upper incision of the thyroid cartilage with a so-called stem and is attached from the inside to the plates of this cartilage, forming an epiglottic tubercle. The posterior surface of the epiglottis is covered with numerous pits, in which are located groin like mucous glands. In these glands inflammation often occurs, resulting in an epiglottis abscess.

View of larynx behind

View of the larynx from behind:

  1. Muscles of the larynx:
    1. Uvula
    2. Palatine tonsil
    3. Lingual tonsil
    4. Epiglottis
    5. Aryepiglottic muscle
    6. Oblique arytenoid muscles
    7. Cricothyroid muscle
    8. Posterior cricoarytenoid muscle
    9. Cricoid cartilage plate
    10. Transverse arytenoid muscle
    11. Lateral glossoepiglottic fold
  2. Laryngeal cavity
    1. Epiglottic tubercle
    2. Vestibular fold
    3. Vocal fold
    4. External thyroarytenoid fold
    5. Cricoid cartilage
    6. Thyroid gland
    7. Cricothyroid muscle
    8. Vocal muscle
    9. Laryngeal ventricle
    10. Thyroid cartilage

Internal structure of the larynx

Internal structure of the larynx

The internal structure of the larynx with the removed right plate of the thyroid cartilage:

  1. Cricothyroid ligament and thyrohyoid membrane:
    1. Hyoepiglottic ligament
    2. Median cricothyroid ligament
    3. Thyrohyoid membrane
    4. Thyroid cartilage
    5. Glottis
    6. Vocal fold
    7. Cricothyroid ligament
    8. Cricoid cartilage
    9. Thyrohyoid membrane
    10. Lateral thyrohyoid ligament
  2. Muscles and larynx ligaments (right side, sagittal median incision):
    1. Lateral thyrohyoid ligament
    2. Median cricothyroid ligament
    3. Cricothyroid muscle
    4. Thyroarytenoid muscle
    5. Vocal fold
    6. Glottis
    7. Thyroepiglottic muscle
    8. Median thyrohyoid ligament

The anterior surface of the epiglottis is connected by a cricothyroid ligament to the body and horns of the hyoid bone. In children and in some adults, the epiglottis is presented as a half-rolled leaf covering the entrance to the larynx. Such an epiglottis is an important obstacle in the examination of the larynx by the method of indirect laryngoscopy.

The thyroid cartilage is located on the cricoid cartilage. Its plates, connecting in front at an angle of 38 °, protect the internal structure of the larynx from external mechanical influences. The upper edge of the thyroid cartilage has an upper notch. To the outer surface of the platelets of the thyroid cartilage, paired sternothyroid and thyrohyoid muscles are attached, the first of which lower the larynx, the second they lift it. The posterior margins of the thyroid cartilage plates pass into greater and lesser horns. Greater horns through the thyrohyoid ligaments are connected to the horn of the hyoid bone. From the anterior notch and the entire free edge of the thyroid cartilage upward comes the median thyrohyoid ligament. In front and sides, the lower edge of the thyroid cartilage is connected to the arch of the cricoid cartilage by means of a wide cricothyroid ligament.

Cricoid cartilage serves as the base of the larynx; From below it is firmly connected to the trachea, and from the top and from the front - with the thyroid cartilage through the ligamentous apparatus and the corresponding joints. These joints are formed by the articular surfaces of the cricoid cartilage and the lower horns of the thyroid cartilage.

The arytenoid cartilages derive their name from the shape of their movement, reminiscent of the reciprocal movement of oars during rowing. These cartilages are in the form of a trihedral pyramid and are located on the upper and posterior margin of the plate of the cricoid cartilage, which are joined by percuticular fascicles. Each vermicular cartilage has a voice process, to which a vocal fold is attached, converging anteriorly in the corner of the thyroid cartilage with the voice fold of the opposite side. A number of muscles of the larynx are attached to the vocal processes and cricoid cartilage.

All cartilages of the larynx, consisting of hyaline cartilage (except the epiglottis) begin to become saturated with calcium salts from 25-30 years of age. The process of ossification of the cartilages of the larynx is steadily progressing, and by the age of 65 the ossification of the larynx is complete. Part of this process may include the ligamentous apparatus, in view of which the cartilages of the larynx become inactive, its acoustic properties become "duller", the voice weakens, becomes deaf and rattling (senile voice).