The termination of superior sagittal sinus and drainage patterns of the lateral, occipital at confluens sinuum in newborns: clinical and embryological implications

Surg Radiol Anat. 2010 Nov;32(9):827-33. doi: 10.1007/s00276-010-0628-2. Epub 2010 Feb 25.


Drainage patterns of dural venous sinuses at confluens sinuum are variable and clinically significant. It has been generally investigated in adults; however, we thought that neonatal cadaver study might be more informative in views of embryological and clinical. A total of 33 skull bases of neonatal cadavers were resected to identify termination patterns of lateral sinus (LS), superior sagittal sinus (SSS) and occipital sinus (OS) at the confluens sinuum. Termination patterns of these sinuses were classified into six types: the SSS showed continuity with right transverse sinus (TS) (with OSs) (30.3%) (Type I); or multiple OSs (21.2%) (Type II). The SSS continued with left TS (with OSs) (12.1% (Type III); or with multiple OSs (6.1%) (Type IV). The SSS shows continuity with both TS (9.1%) (Type V). SSS symmetrically bifurcated, the confluens sinuum has a large OS (21.2%) (Type VI). Understanding of the cerebral venous drainage and large variation of the posterior fossa dural sinuses is crucially important for planning surgical intervention to some tumors in the neck which may require ligation of the internal jugular vein.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Embryonic Development
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Skull Base / anatomy & histology*
  • Superior Sagittal Sinus / anatomy & histology*