Journal: Ophthalmic Plastic And Reconstructive Surgery, Volume 17, Issue 6, Nov 2001
PURPOSE To describe the gross and microscopic anatomy of the depressor supercilii muscle and to discuss its cosmetic implications.
METHODS The depressor supercilii muscle was studied in detail with the use of gross anatomic dissections carried out on eight sides of four fresh cadaver heads and ten sides of five preserved cadaver heads. Histological analysis was performed on parasagittal sections of one side of a preserved cadaver head. Measurements were taken on cadaver specimens to determine the insertion point of the depressor supercilii muscle on the undersurface of the skin.
RESULTS The depressor supercilii muscle is distinct from the corrugator supercilii muscle and the medial head of the orbital portion of the orbicularis oculi muscle. The depressor supercilii muscle was noted to be superior in orientation and redder in color than the orbicularis oculi muscle. The depressor supercilii muscle arose from the frontal process of the maxilla approximately 1 cm above the medial canthal tendon and appeared to originate from two distinct heads in most specimens, a novel finding. In specimens containing two heads of the depressor supercilii muscle, the angular vessels passed between the two muscle heads. In specimens containing one muscle head, the angular vessels were found anterior to the muscle. The insertion of the depressor supercilii muscle in the dermis lay approximately 13 to 14 mm superior to the medial canthal tendon.
CONCLUSIONS The origin, insertion, and anatomy of the depressor supercilii muscle help it to act as a depressor of the eyebrow. Histologically, the depressor supercilii muscle arises distinctly from bone and has a unique insertion. The depressor supercilii muscle appears to be distinct from the corrugator supercilii and the orbicularis oculi muscles.