Background: The microsurgical anatomy of the middle cerebral artery (MCA) is of particular interest to the cerebrovascular surgeon. The purpose of this study was to define the microsurgical anatomy of the MCA and its various branches in the Indian population.
Methods: Ten MCAs were studied from five cadaveric brain specimens. The authors studied the outer diameter, length, branches, perforators and site of these on the main trunk (M1), the division of the main trunk, the secondary trunks and their various cortical branches using the operating microscope under 5-20x magnification.
Results: The outer diameter of the MCA main trunk ranges from 2.5 to 4 mm with a mean of 3.35 mm. The superolateral branches consisted of polar temporal artery and anterior temporal artery that had a common origin and sometimes the uncal artery or the accessory uncal artery. Perforators or lenticulostriate arteries were seen in the inferomedial surface all along the length of M1. Eight bifurcations and two trifurcations were noted. Cortical branches and their origin are discussed.
Conclusion: Although the microsurgical anatomy of the MCA in Indian population correlated with the findings in the western literature, some structural and statistical variations were noted.