Rectus capitis posterior minor

The rectus capitis posterior minor (Latin: musculus rectus capitis posterior minor) is a small pyramid-shaped muscle of the neck. It is located in the posterior compartment of the neck. Therefore, the rectus capitis posterior minor is one of the posterior neck muscles. It is situated in the deepest layer of the group. As this muscle stretches below the occipital bone of the skull, it is classified as the suboccipital muscle. It acts at the atlanto-occipital joint.

Rectus capitis posterior minor, Suboocipital muscles, Posterior neck muscles, Neck muscles, Head and neck muscles, Posterior view, Rectus capitis posterior minor muscle colored blue
Rectus capitis posterior minor muscle by Anatomy Next
Rectus capitis posterior minor
OriginPosterior tubercle of atlas (C1)
InsertionMedial aspect of inferior nuchal line of occipital bone
ActionHead extension
Innervation Suboccipital nerve (posterior ramus of 1st cervical spinal nerve (C1))
Blood supply Branches of occipital and vertebral arteries

 

Origin

The rectus capitis posterior minor muscle originates from the posterior tubercle of the atlas (C1).

 

Insertion

The fibers of the rectus capitis posterior minor insert on the external surface of the occipital bone - on the medial aspect of the inferior nuchal line.

 

Action

The primary function provided by the rectus capitis posterior minor muscle is the extension of the head.

 

Innervation

The rectus capitis posterior minor is innervated by the posterior ramus of the 1st cervical spinal nerve (C1), also known as the suboccipital nerve.

 

Blood supply

The rectus capitis posterior minor muscle receives arterial blood supply from the branches of the vertebral and occipital arteries.