Inferior nasal concha

The inferior nasal conchae or turbinates are one of the pairs of conchae in the nose.

Gross anatomy

It extends horizontally along the lateral wall of the nasal cavity and consists of a lamina of spongy bone, curled upon itself like a scroll. The inferior nasal conchae are considered a pair of facial bones since they articulate with their respective maxillae bones and project horizontally into the nasal cavity.

Superior to the inferior nasal conchae are the middle nasal conchae and superior nasal conchae. Unlike the inferior conchae, these are not separate bones, but medial extensions of the labyrinth portion of the ethmoid bone.


The medial surface is convex, perforated by numerous apertures, and traversed by longitudinal grooves for the lodgement of vessels. The lateral surface is concave and forms part of the inferior meatus.


Its upper border is thin, irregular, and connected to various bones along the lateral wall of the nasal cavity. The inferior border is free, thick, and cellular in structure, especially in the middle of the bone.

The upper border may be divided into three portions:

  • the anterior articulates with the conchal crest of the maxilla
  • the posterior with the conchal crest of the palatine bone
  • the middle portion presents three well-marked processes, which vary much in their size and form


The inferior nasal concha is ossified from a single center, which appears about the fifth month of fetal life in the lateral wall of the cartilaginous nasal capsule.

Anatomy: Head and neck

Anatomy: Head and neck

Article information

rID: 4780
System: Head & Neck
Section: Anatomy
Tag: refs
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Inferior nasal turbinate
  • Inferior turbinate
  • Inferior nasal conchae
  • Inferior nasal concha

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Cases and figures

  • Figure 1: lateral wall of the nasal cavity
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  • Figure 2: normal ostiomeatal complex
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