The Ossicle of Paaw

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Some anatomists have reported more than 3 ossicles within the middle ear. The most widely discussed of these is the lenticular ossicle, which we now understand to be the lenticular process forming the distal tip of the long process of the incus. Another supernumerary ossicle, within the stapes tendon, has also been described by a number of anatomists. Here, we examine the history of this ossicle's discovery, the sources of confusion concerning its existence in humans, and its presence in some mammalian species. We also discuss the variability in the nomenclature of supernumerary ossicles for historical accounts.

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