The maxillary nerve is one of the three major branches of cranial nerve V (CN V), or trigeminal nerve. It is composed of sensory fibers, carrying sensory information from the upper jaw (maxillary) and its teeth, the mucous membranes of the palate, nasal cavities and nasopharynx. The maxillary nerve is located intermediate between the ophthalmic nerve and the mandibular nerve, which are the other two branches of the CN V, passing from the trigeminal ganglion into the pterygopalatine fossa, where it travels forward to give off the zygomatic nerve and enter the eye socket.
Branches of the Maxillary Nerve
From the pterygopalatine fossa: 1) infraorbital nerve through infraorbital canal; 2) zygomatic nerve through inferior orbital fissure; 3) nasal branches (nasopalatine) through sphenopalatine foramen; 4) superior alveolar nerves; 5) palatine nerves; 6) pharyngeal nerve.
In the infraorbital fissure: 1) anterior superior alveolar nerve; 2) infraorbital nerve.
On the face: 1) inferior palpebral nerve; 2) superior labial nerve.