We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What Is a Cerebellar Artery?

By Andy Josiah
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

The cerebellar artery is an artery that delivers blood to the cerebellum. Named for the Latin term for “little brain,” the cerebellum is the smaller part of the brain’s lower region responsible for the human body’s motor control, which is essential for movement. The cerebellum also contributes to cognitive functions such as communication and attention. Thus, the cerebellar artery is instrumental in ensuring that the cerebellum functions properly. It also goes by the term arteria cerebelli.

There are three major cerebellar arteries, or blood vessels that function as the cerebellum’s primary source of blood. They are the anterior inferior cerebellar artery, the posterior interior cerebellar artery and the superior cerebellar artery. The anterior and posterior arteries and the superior artery are classified as “inferior” and “superior,” respectively, because the latter is placed above the former. These adjectives also correspond to the area of the cerebellum that each cerebellar artery is responsible for supplying.

The posterior inferior cerebellar artery (PICA) is the bottommost of the cerebellar arteries. It is the largest branch of the vertebral arteries, which functions as the neck’s major arteries. The posterior artery traverses past the lower part of the brain stem called the medulla oblongata and some cranial nerves. At the cerebellum it splits into two branches. The lateral one supplies blood to the little brain’s under surface, while the medial branch continues its journey backward to an area lodged between the cerebellum’s two hemispheres.

Located above the PICA is the anterior inferior cerebellar artery (AICA). It originates from the basilar artery, which joins with the vertebral arteries to form the vertebrobasilar system that supplies oxygenated blood to the brain. Like the posterior artery, the AICA passes through the brain stem. The specific area of the cerebellum it supplies is the front section of its under surface, right before and above the area that is supplied by the PICA.

The superior cerebellar artery (SCA) comes from the area of the basilar artery’s termination. It is responsible for supplying the cerebellum’s top half. The SCA also supplies parts of the midbrain, which is situated above the cerebellum.

In pathology, which is the study of diseases, the PICA is implicated in neurological disorders such as lateral medullary syndrome, or PICA syndrome, and Horner's syndrome due to tissue death or blockage. Obstruction of the AICA can lead to lateral pontine syndrome, or AICA syndrome. The condition trigeminal neuralgia is caused by the SCA compressing the trigeminal nerve.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.