Whole Courses of the Oculomotor, Trochlear, and Abducens Nerves, Identified in Sectioned Images and Surface Models.
In medicine, the neuroanatomy of the oculomotor (III), trochlear (IV), and abducens nerves (VI) is learned essentially by cadaver dissection, histological specimens, and MRI. However, these methods have many limitations and it is necessary to compensate for the insufficiencies of previous methods. The aim of this research was to present sectioned images and surface models that allow the whole courses of III, IV, and VI and circumjacent structures to be observed in detail. To achieve this, the structures of whole courses of III, IV, and VI were traced on the sectioned images, and surface models of the structures were reconstructed. As a result, nucleus of III, Edinger-Westphal nucleus, nucleus of IV, and nucleus of VI and their fibers were identified on brainstem in the sectioned images. In the sectioned images, III, IV, and VI passed both sides of the cavernous sinus and entered at the orbit through the superior orbital fissure. In the sectioned images, III, IV, and VI innervated extraocular muscles in orbit. In surface models, the whole courses of III, IV, and VI and circumjacent structures could be explored freely three-dimensionally. The greatest advantage of the sectioned images was that they allowed the whole courses of III, IV, and VI and circumjacent structures to be observed as real colored in an unbroken line. In addition, the surface models allowed the stereoscopic shapes and positions of III, IV, and VI to be comprehended. The sectioned images and surface models could be applied for medical education purposes or training tools. All data generated during this study is available free of charge at anatomy.dongguk.ac.kr/cn/. Anat Rec, 2014. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.