Eustachian Tube (Auditory Tube)

Author: Scott A. Sheffield MS

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Along the lateral walls of the nasopharynx are the image descriptionopenings to the Eustachian tubes (auditory or pharyngotympanic tubes).

Sagittal and middle ear views
Sagittal and middle ear view with labels: Eustachian tube openings
  • Each narrow tube connects the nasopharynx with the image descriptionmiddle ear (highlighted in green) structures found inside the air-filled tympanic cavity of the image descriptiontemporal bone.

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Middle ear view
Middle ear view labeled: Auditory ossicles
Middle ear view labeled: temporal bone
  • You can open your auditory tubes by moving your mouth and neck muscles, such as yawning. When this occurs, air can flow between the middle ear and the nasopharynx.
  • This process image descriptionequalizing the pressure on both sides of the eardrum (or tympanic membrane), making it easier for the eardrum to vibrate in response to sound waves.
Middle ear view labeled: Equalized pressure

An Overview of the Eustachian Tubes (Auditory Tubes) of the Pharynx

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Middle ear and sagittal head view
Middle ear and sagittal head view with labels: eustachian tube opening, temporal bone, auditory ossicles
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