Upper jaw (maxilla)

The maxilla is a paired, somewhat pyramidal-shaped bone of the skull that is located in the central aspect of the face (midface) and contains an air-filled cavity called the maxillary sinus (Read more!). It is classified as the bone of the viscerocranium, and it also forms the upper jaw.  

The maxilla contributes to the formation of the bony orbit, nasal cavity, most of the hard palate, pterygopalatine and infratemporal fossae. Moreover, it holds the upper teeth and has a crucial role in mastication. Additionally, it also forms the inferior and lateral borders of the piriform aperture. Therefore, the maxilla provides not only structural support but also has functional and aesthetic significance.

The maxilla is the central bone of the viscerocranium, and it conects to almost all facial bones except the mandible. From the bones of the neurocranium, it articulates with the frontal bone, sphenoid, and ethmoid. The maxilla connects with its counterpart via the intermaxillary suture. Additionally, it also connects with the septal nasal cartilage.

Each maxilla is composed of five parts. It has one central body (Read more!) and the following four processes (Read more!):