Posterior inferior cerebellar artery

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Artery: Posterior inferior cerebellar artery
The three major arteries of the cerebellum: the SCA, AICA, and PICA. (Posterior inferior cerebellar artery is PICA.)
File:Circle of Willis en.svg
Diagram of the arterial circulation at the base of the brain. (PICA is labeled at bottom right.)
Latin arteria cerebelli inferior posterior
Gray's subject #148 580
Supplies cerebellum, choroid plexus of the fourth ventricle
Source vertebral artery   
Branches medial branch
Vein inferior cerebellar veins
/ Elsevier

Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]


The posterior inferior cerebellar artery (PICA), the largest branch of the vertebral, is one of the three main arterial blood supplies for the cerebellum.


It winds backward around the upper part of the medulla oblongata, passing between the origins of the vagus and accessory nerves, over the inferior peduncle to the under surface of the cerebellum, where it divides into two branches.

The medial branch is continued backward to the notch between the two hemispheres of the cerebellum; while the lateral supplies the under surface of the cerebellum, as far as its lateral border, where it anastomoses with the anterior inferior cerebellar and the superior cerebellar branches of the basilar artery.

Branches from this artery supply the choroid plexus of the fourth ventricle.


Infarction of this artery due to thrombosis or stroke leads to PICA syndrome, a neurological disease with characteristic, stereotyped symptoms.

Additional images

The arteries of the base of the brain. Posterior inferior cerebellar artery labeled at bottom. The temporal pole of the cerebrum and a portion of the cerebellar hemisphere have been removed on the right side. Inferior aspect (viewed from below).

External links

This article was originally based on an entry from a public domain edition of Gray's Anatomy. As such, some of the information contained herein may be outdated. Please edit the article if this is the case, and feel free to remove this notice when it is no longer relevant.

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