False-colour SEM of the bones of the middle ear

False-colour SEM of the bones of the middle ear

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Credit: CNRI/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: False-colour scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of the 3 bones responsible for conduction of sound waves in the middle ear. At top left is the malleus (hammer) which strikes the incus (anvil - at right of malleus); the incus is joined to the stapes (stirrups), which conducts sound towards the inner ear. Sound waves enter the ear through the external auditory meatus & cause the eardrum to vibrate. The 3 bones transmit vibrations towards the fluid-filled structures of the inner ear - the stapes' footplate presses into the fluid-filled scala vestibuli of the cochlea, the structure that converts vibrations into nervous impulses). Mag: x3 at 35mm, x5 at 6x4.5 size.

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Keywords: anatomy, auditory sense, bone, false-coloured, hearing, human body, images, incus, magnified image, malleus, microscopic photos, middle ear, stapes, stirrup bone, subjects

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