Nerve, first cranial

Dementia Quiz

Medical Definition of Nerve, first cranial

Nerve, first cranial: The first cranial nerve is the olfactory nerve, the nerve that carries impulses for the sense of smell from the nose to the brain.

The cranial nerves emerge from or enter the skull (the cranium), as opposed to the spinal nerves which emerge from the vertebral column. There are twelve cranial nerves.

The word "olfactory" comes from the Latin "olfactare", to sniff at and "olfacere", to smell.


Quick GuideDementia, Alzheimer's Disease, and Aging Brains

Dementia, Alzheimer's Disease, and Aging Brains

Subscribe to MedicineNet's General Health Newsletter

By clicking Submit, I agree to the MedicineNet's Terms & Conditions & Privacy Policy and understand that I may opt out of MedicineNet's subscriptions at any time.

Reviewed on 7/1/2016

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors