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Papers of the Week

Papers: 20 Feb 2021 - 26 Feb 2021


2021 Feb 18

J Anat

The trigeminal system: The meningovascular complex- A review.


Terrier L-M, Hadjikhani N, Velut S, Magnain C, Amelot A, Bernard F, Zöllei L, Destrieux C
J Anat. 2021 Feb 18.
PMID: 33604906.


Supratentorial sensory perception, including pain, is subserved by the trigeminal nerve, in particular, by the branches of its ophthalmic division, which provide an extensive innervation of the dura mater and of the major brain blood vessels. In addition, contrary to previous assumptions, studies on awake patients during surgery have demonstrated that the mechanical stimulation of the pia mater and small cerebral vessels can also produce pain. The trigeminovascular system, located at the interface between the nervous and vascular systems, is therefore perfectly positioned to detect sensory inputs and influence blood flow regulation. Despite the fact that it remains only partially understood, the trigeminovascular system is most probably involved in several pathologies, including very frequent ones such as migraine, or other severe conditions, such as subarachnoid haemorrhage. The incomplete knowledge about the exact roles of the trigeminal system in headache, blood flow regulation, blood barrier permeability and trigemino-cardiac reflex warrants for an increased investigation of the anatomy and physiology of the trigeminal system. This translational review aims at presenting comprehensive information about the dural and brain afferents of the trigeminovascular system, in order to improve the understanding of trigeminal cranial sensory perception and to spark a new field of exploration for headache and other brain diseases.