The tongue is a highly vascularized muscle covered with specialized mucosa on its dorsum and non-keratinized mucosa on its ventral side. Its vascularization is largely supplied by the lingual arteries and ranine veins. The purpose of this chapter is to describe the anatomic aspects of the tongue, with an emphasis on vascularization. This description is based on an animal model, using vascular corrosion casting and electron scanning microscopy. Vascular corrosion casting involves the perfusion of resin through the heart, which then cures and molds the vascular lumens. The tissue adjacent to the mold is then macerated, leaving the vascular models.
Through an analysis of these models, the vascular pattern of the dorsum, underside and intrinsic muscles of the tongue, which are described in detail in this chapter, provides useful information for a better anatomic-morphological understanding of the microvascularization of this organ. The description of the normal vascular pattern of the tongue serves as a parameter for the elucidation of pathologic mechanisms of diseases of an inflammatory, neoplastic origin that affect this organ. (Imprint: Nova)