Superior pharyngeal constrictor muscle
The superior pharyngeal constrictor muscle is a muscle of the throat that assists in swallowing by constricting the pharynx when contracted. It is the highest of the three pharyngeal constrictor muscles that coordinate the downward movement of food through the pharynx to the esophagus.
The superior pharyngeal constrictor muscle originates from several points on the inside of the skull. The upper part of the origin is on the lower two thirds of the medial pterygoid plate, part of the sphenoid bone - the bone in the skull behind the eye. The middle part is on the pterygomandibular raphe, a ligament that connects the medial pterygoid plate to the mandible (jaw bone). The lowest part of the origin is on the mandible, at the and posterior end of the mylohyoid line. These three segments of the origin form one continuous attachment along the pterygomandibular raphe and on both sides of it.
The superior pharyngeal constrictor muscle inserts at the pharyngeal raphe at the back of the pharynx and on the occipital bone at the back of the skull. Specifically, it attaches at the upper midline of the pharyngeal raphe and at the pharyngeal tubercle on the occipital bone.