The Cranial Nerves List comprises 12 pairs of nerves that originate from the brain and are vital for maintaining essential bodily functions. These nerves serve various purposes, including relaying sensory information, controlling muscles, and regulating the activity of glands and internal organs.
The cranial nerves are responsible for transmitting information from the brain to various parts of the body, primarily the head and neck regions. These nerves occur in pairs and are present on both sides of the body. They play a crucial role in facilitating functions such as smell, vision, hearing, and muscle movement. Unlike spinal nerves, cranial nerves arise directly from the brain and exit through its foramina. Most of these nerves originate in the brainstem and travel through the muscles and sense organs in the head and neck. As a result, cranial nerves are primarily associated with the head, neck, and other facial regions of the body.
Cranial Nerves List
The 12 cranial nerves are assigned Roman numerals based on their emergence order from the brain, beginning from the front and ending at the back. While cranial nerves are generally considered part of the peripheral nervous system, the olfactory and optic nerves are classified as components of the central nervous system. Most of these nerves belong to the somatic system and are responsible for sensory and motor functions. Some cranial nerves contain only sensory or motor fibers, while others are mixed nerves that contain both types of fibers.
Below is the list of cranial nerves, their location and their respective functions.
|Cranial Nerves List||Location||Type||Function|
|Olfactory (I)||Cribriform plate||Sensory||Smell|
|Optic (II)||Optic foramen||Sensory||Vision|
|Oculomotor (III)||Superior orbital fissure||Motor||Eye movement|
|Trochlear (IV)||Superior orbital fissure||Motor||Eye movement|
|Trigeminal (V)||Superior orbital fissure||Mixed||Facial sensation|
|Abducens (VI)||Superior orbital fissure||Motor||Eye movement|
|Facial (VII)||Internal auditory canal||Mixed||Facial expression|
|Vestibulocochlear nerve (VIII) (auditory vestibular nerve)||Internal auditory canal||Sensory||Hearing and balance|
|Glossopharyngeal (IX)||Jugular foramen||Mixed||Oral sensation and taste|
|Vagus (X)||Jugular foramen||Mixed||Vagus nerve|
|Accessory (XI)||Jugular foramen||Motor||Shoulder elevation and head-turning|
|Hypoglossal (XII)||Hypoglossal||Motor||Tongue movement|
Cranial Nerves list and Function PDF
Download list of Cranial Nerves with their function pdf from below link.