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Lab 3 - The Ventricles and Blood Supply

Purpose:

In this exercise, we will first examine the ventricles and the superficial blood vessels of the brain. We will then examine the external surface of the brain stem and the cranial nerve attachments.

As the veins are impossible to differentiate from small arteries, we will not go over the veins in this exercise. Consequently, it is important that you read the assignments in Nolte to gain an appreciation of the locations of the major veins and the venous sinuses.

External landmarks of the brainstem should be studied as an aid to determining the level of the brain stem, to help develop a threedimensional view to correlate with slides, and to help identify and recall the points of attachment of the cranial nerves.

The cranial nerves should be reviewed. Try to recall their extracranial course, the structures they innervate, and the functions they subserve. You will spend a considerable amount of time in later exercises learning about the central connections of the cranial nerves and reviewing their peripheral connections. As you locate each cranial nerve, identify the part of the brain to which it is attached and try to recall from what embryonic brain vesicle it is derived.

Objectives:

By the end of the exercise, you should be able to:

  1. Recall the major characteristics of the ventricles and the flow of cerebrospinal fluid through the brain.
  2. Identify the major superficial blood vessels of the brain and describe the regions supplied by the vessels.
  3. Describe the external topography of the brain stem.
  4. Identify the cranial nerves and the points of their attachment to the brain.

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