Ossicles

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Definition

The ossicles are three small bones that are involved in the mechanism of the human middle ear. Located in the tympanic ring, one of the structures that make up the temporal bone, the ossicles are called the malleus, incus, and stapes (or hammer, anvil, and stirrup). These bones are the smallest bones in the human skeleton. They play an essential role in the transmission of sound from the eardrum to the cochlea. To perform motor activity, the bones are supported by two muscles. The hammer muscle allows the eardrum to stretch while the stapedius muscle reduces tension on the eardrum and the pressure caused by the liquid found in the labyrinth.

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