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Muscles, Nerves, and Blood Vessels of the Eyes

By

James Garrity

, MD, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science

Last full review/revision Mar 2019| Content last modified Mar 2019
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The optic nerve (a cranial nerve), which carries impulses from the retina to the brain, as well as other cranial nerves, which transmit impulses to each eye muscle, travel through the orbit (the bony cavity that surrounds the eyeball).

An ophthalmic artery and a central retinal artery (an artery that branches off of the ophthalmic artery) provide blood to each eye.

Similarly, ophthalmic veins (vortex veins) and a central retinal vein drain blood from the eye. These blood vessels enter and leave through the back of the eye.

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Ischemic Optic Neuropathy
Ischemic optic neuropathy is a condition in which the optic nerve is damaged by a blockage of its blood supply. One type of ischemia is nonarteritic ischemic optic neuropathy, in which something other than inflammation causes a blockage. At which age do significant numbers of people typically develop nonarteritic ischemic optic neuropathy?
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