The continuation of the spinal cord within the skull, forming the lowest part of the brainstem and containing control centers for the heart and lungs.
- Located at the base of the skull, the medulla oblongata is continuous with the spinal cord at the foramen magnum.
- Many arterial branches arise from the vertebral and basilar artery to supply the medulla oblongata and the pons.
- In the lower part of the illustration is the cut surface of the medulla oblongata and a view of the ventral pons from below.
Late 17th century: modern Latin, literally 'elongated medulla'.
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Syllabification: me·dul·la ob·long·a·ta
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