Lymph Vessels of the Temporomandibular Joint
Some of the lymph vessels of the temporomandibular joint drain to the parotid lymph node, and some drain to the mandibular lymph nodes. The lymph vessels that drain to the parotid lymph node consist of 1 to 2 small vessels that emerge from the caudal side of the joint and run directly to the parotid lymph node. The lymph vessel that drains to the mandibular lymph node emerges on the medial side of the joint, between the maxillary tuberosity and the coronoid process of the mandible, travels towards the oral border of the M. masseter, and, from there, to the mandibular lymph nodes, specifically to the dorsal mandibular lymph node. In one observed case, a lymph vessel of the temporomandibular joint drained directly to the medial retropharyngeal lymph node.