Does Zygomaticus Come Under Orbicularis Oris or Come Right Next to It?

i am sorry, this question is a little off the topic. But i really want to understand if the zygomaticus comes under orbicularis oris. In some photo of facial muscles, i see zygomaticus go from cheek bone and stops next to orbicularis oris. But in some picture, I notice the zygomaticus comes over the orbicularis oris. And I heard someone said it comes under orbicularisoris. this is very confusing me. please help me understand. Thank you

Doctor Answers 3

Facial anatomy

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It sounds like an in training or recertification exam question. The answer is E - none of the above. In anatomical dissections of cadavers at Yonsei University, South Korea four categories of zymaticus major insertion were found. In type I, the superficial muscle band of the zygomaticus major is blended and interlaced with the levator anguli oris, whereas the fibers of the deep muscle band blend into the buccinator, passing deeper to the levator anguli oris; this was the situation most commonly encountered (54.3 percent). It was found that the insertion of the zygomaticus major was divided into superficial and deep bands (types I and IV) [42 cases (60 percent)] and into three layers of superficial, middle, and deep fibers (type II) [17 cases (24.3 percent)]. The others were cases where the zygomaticus major was inserted deep into the levator anguli oris as a single muscle band (type III) [11 cases (15.7 percent)]. The levator anguli oris, orbicularis oris, buccinator etc. then insert together into a modiolus near the corner of the mouth (the dimples that form when you smile). Therefore in most cases the muscle ends before it ever reaches the orbicularis oris.

My response to your question/post does not represent formal medical advice or constitute a doctor patient relationship. You need to consult with i.e. personally see a board certified plastic surgeon in order to receive a formal evaluation and develop a doctor patient relationship.

Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon


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Take a look at various Grant's Anatomy textbooks and you will find that the Zygomaticus runs deep to the orbicularis oris muscle and close to it.

Robert Shumway, MD
San Diego Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

The zygomaticus is deep to the orbicularis.

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Just because something is drawn a certain way does not make it so. This often cofuses surgeons who have been know to do surgery on the strength of an inaccurately drawn cartoon.

Kenneth D. Steinsapir, MD
Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.