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Overview_of_Pharynx_and_Larynx - Overview of Pharynx and...

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Overview of Pharynx and Larynx The pharynx connects the nasal and oral cavities with the esophagus and larynx. It is the common tube for food, liquids and air. Food and liquids travel from the mouth to the esophagus. Air travels from the choanae (internal nares) of the nasal cavity to the trachea. It is part of the digestive system posterior to the nasal and oral cavities. It extends inferiorly past the larynx to the inferior border of the cricoid cartilage anteriorly, and the inferior border of the C6 vertebra posteriorly. The pharynx is divided into 3 parts: nasopharynx, oropharynx and laryngopharynx. The nasopharynx is located between the choanae of the nasal cavity and the soft palate. It is the respiratory part of the pharynx. The nasopharynx contains the pharyngeal tonsil (adenoids), and the pharyngotympanic (auditory) tube surrounded by the tubal tonsil. The oropharynx is located between the soft palate and the hyoid bone. The palatine tonsils are located on its lateral wall. The laryngopharynx is located between the hyoid bone and epiglottis and the beginning of the esophagus. It is posterior to and has an anterior opening into the larynx. Lateral to the laryngeal opening are the piriform recesses (fossae) where foreign bodies ( especially fish bones) can become lodged.
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