cranial nerve


Definition of cranial nerve

: any of the nerves that arise in pairs from the lower surface of the brain one on each side and pass through openings in the skull to the periphery of the body and that comprise 12 pairs in reptiles, birds, and mammals and usually 10 in fishes and amphibians

Examples of cranial nerve in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The vagus nerve is the longest cranial nerve in the body. Womensmedia, Forbes, 15 Apr. 2021 That receptor then sends a signal through the cranial nerves to the medulla oblongata, which is part of your brainstem, and through to your primary gustatory complex, which interprets individual signals as flavors. Popular Science, 21 Jan. 2020 That created for him physical disabilities—cranial nerves were messed with. The New Yorker, 20 Oct. 2019 Following several instances of dizziness and unusual weakness, Kelly received a diagnosis: acoustic neuroma or vestibular schwannoma, a tumor sitting on her cranial nerves. Benjamin Vanhoose,, 15 Oct. 2019 Hearing, vision, cranial nerves and facial muscles are also examined. Mary Anne Chute Lynch,, 12 Oct. 2019 Death would likely come from pressure applied to the neck and cut off circulation of nerves, particularly the vagus nerve, which is the tenth cranial nerve and longest nerve in the body, Wecht said. Morgan Hines, USA TODAY, 10 Aug. 2019 Stafford was diagnosed earlier this month with a benign tumor called an acoustic neuroma that was sitting on her cranial nerves. Kyle Meinke |,, 22 Apr. 2019 Whether stunted due to the tumor or killed by the chemo, Kevin's seventh cranial nerve withered. Neil Steinberg, CNN, 13 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cranial nerve.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cranial nerve

1840, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for cranial nerve

Time Traveler

The first known use of cranial nerve was in 1840

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Dictionary Entries Near cranial nerve

cranial module

cranial nerve

cranial segment

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Cite this Entry

“Cranial nerve.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Aug. 2021.

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More Definitions for cranial nerve

cranial nerve


Medical Definition of cranial nerve

: any of the 12 paired nerves that arise from the lower surface of the brain with one of each pair on each side and pass through openings in the skull to the periphery of the body — see abducens nerve, accessory nerve, auditory nerve, facial nerve, glossopharyngeal nerve, hypoglossal nerve, oculomotor nerve, olfactory nerve, optic nerve, trigeminal nerve, trochlear nerve, vagus nerve

More from Merriam-Webster on cranial nerve

Britannica English: Translation of cranial nerve for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about cranial nerve


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