Localization of pterion in neonatal cadavers: a morphometric study

Surg Radiol Anat. 2010 Jul;32(6):545-50. doi: 10.1007/s00276-009-0615-7. Epub 2010 Jan 3.


Purpose: Pterion is defined as a junction of temporal, frontal, parietal, and sphenoid bones. In newborns, pterion may be defined as a region that shows variability in the exact location because of the lack of complete bony structure. The aim of this study is to define the topographic anatomy of this important surgical point, pterion, and the variability of its localization on craniums of newborn cadavers.

Methods: Our study was performed using 35 term neonatal cadaver specimens. We measured the distances between the pterion and other critical points and used a scale diagram for the definition of pterional area.

Results: Our scale diagram showed that pterion is mostly localized in regions c, d, e, and f on the length and regions 2, 3, 4, and 5 on the width. Localization was not observed in regions a, b, g, and h, and in areas of squares 1 and 6. The most observed localization of pterion was the e4 (24.28%) area.

Conclusion: This study provides a detailed knowledge on localization of this important point, pterion, which will be useful for the clinicians at operation planning and treatment stages, serving for the success in surgery in the presence of this variable topographic cranial anatomy.

MeSH terms

  • Cadaver
  • Cranial Sutures / anatomy & histology*
  • Cranial Sutures / embryology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Parietal Bone / anatomy & histology
  • Skull / anatomy & histology
  • Skull / embryology*
  • Sphenoid Bone / anatomy & histology
  • Temporal Bone / anatomy & histology
  • Term Birth