Decussation is a common phenomenon in the nervous system. It occurs in many different parts of the brain and spinal cord.

What is decussation?

Decussation is the crossing over of nerve fibers from one hemisphere of the brain to the opposite (contralateral) hemisphere. This happens in several places in the brainstem, including the pons and medulla oblongata.

Decussation is important for our ability to perceive the world around us. It allows us to integrate information from both sides of our bodies and our environment.

If decussation were not to occur, we would only be able to perceive things that happen on one side of our bodies or our environment.

Where does decussation happen?

Decussation happens in several places in the brainstem, including:

  • The trapezoid body, which is located in the pons
  • The lateral lemniscus, which is located in the pons and medulla oblongata
  • The inferior colliculus, which is located in the midbrain
  • The medial geniculate body, which is located in the thalamus
  • The auditory cortex, which is located in the temporal lobe of the brain

What is the function of decussation?

The function of decussation is to allow both ears to receive information about sounds that come from all directions. This is because when sound waves enter the ear, they are transmitted to both auditory nerves. However, the nerve fibers from the ear on the right side of the head cross over to the left side of the brain, and vice versa. This means that the brain receives information about sounds from both ears, even though the sound waves only entered one ear.

What is an example of a decussation?

An example of a decussation is the optic chiasma. The optic chiasma is a structure located in the brainstem that allows information from the left and right eyes to be sent to both sides of the brain. This is important because it allows us to see a complete image of our surroundings, even though the light from objects only enters one eye at a time.

What is decussation also known as?

Decussation is also known as crossing or crossing over.