Masticator Space:

This space contains the muscles of mastication. These include the masticator, temporalis, the medial and lateral pterygoids. Metastatic extensions of squamous cell carcinoma, particularly from the floor of the mouth, tonsilar fossa, and nasopharynx can be found extending into this space. Salivary gland tumors can also extend into this space. If neoplasm is discovered in this space, one should check for extension to the side of the skull as the masticator space extends very high into the suprazygomatic region along the temporalis muscle. One should also check for possible perineural spread, particularly along the course of the mandibular division of cranial nerve 5. Lymphomas and hemangiomas as well as cellulitis or abscesses can also be found in this compartment.

 Masticator Space

* Masseter, medial lateral pterygoid muscles, temporalis.

* Common Masses:

Squamous Cell Carcinoma
Salivary Gland Tumors
Lymphoma
Hemangioma
Abscess
Rhabdomyosarcoma

* Warning checks:

Perineural spread along V3 (foramen ovale)
Pterygopalatine fossa to orbital apex and cavernous sinus


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