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Upper esophageal sphincter

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Title: Upper esophageal sphincter  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: Inferior pharyngeal constrictor muscle, Esophageal sphincter, UES
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Upper esophageal sphincter

Upper esophageal sphincter
Muscles of the pharynx and cheek. (Constrictor pharyngis inferior visible at bottom left.)
Sagittal section of nose mouth, pharynx, and larynx. (Upper esophageal sphincter not labeled, but region is visible.)
MeSH Upper+Esophageal+Sphincter

The upper esophageal sphincter (UES) (also called the pharyngoesophageal sphincter) refers to the superior portion of the esophagus.

Unlike the lower esophageal sphincter, it consists of striated muscle and yet, is not under conscious control. Opening of the UES is triggered by the swallow reflex. The primary muscle of the UES is the cricopharyngeus portion of the inferior pharyngeal constrictor.[1]

During swallowing, the upper esophageal sphincter opens so the bolus can pass into the esophagus. A secondary role of the UES is to reduce backflow from the esophagus into the pharynx. It also makes the sound of eructation.

See also


External links

  • Diagram at

This article incorporates text from a public domain edition of Gray's Anatomy.

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