Medical Definition of Base of tongue

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Base of tongue: The back third of the tongue. In contrast to the anterior tongue, which is the front two-thirds of the tongue. The distinction between the anterior and base of the tongue reflects the fact that they are of different embryological origin. The distinction also matters as regards cancer. See: Tongue cancer.

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Reviewed on 12/21/2018

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