Longissimus Capitis

Original Editor Oyemi Sillo

Top Contributors - Evan Thomas, Merihan Hussein, Kim Jackson and Oyemi Sillo


Longissimus Capitis belongs to the intermediate column of the Sacrospinalis group of muscles.[1]



Posterior surface of transverse processes of T1 to T5 and the articular tubercle of C4 to C7.[2]

Longissimus capitis origin.jpg


Posterior margin of mastoid process and the temporal bone.[2][3]

Longissimus capitis insertion.jpg

Nerve Supply

Dorsal rami of cervical and thoracic spinal nerves (C6 to T4).[4]

Blood Supply

Muscular branches of the occipital artery from the external carotid artery.[4]


Acting bilaterally, extends and hyperextends head; acting unilaterally, flexes and rotates the head ipsilaterally.[2]

Trigger Point Referral Pattern

Pain is usually referred around the ear, but can also refer nearby into the neck and behind the eye.[5]

Long capitis pain referral.png

Muscle Activation


  1. Gray, Henry. Anatomy of the Human Body. Philadelphia: Lea & Febiger, 1918; Bartleby.com, 2000. www.bartleby.com/107/.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 http://www.wheelessonline.com/ortho/longissimus_capitis_1
  3. http://www.primalonlinelearning.com/cedaandp/muscular_system/muscles_of_the_back.aspx#longissimuscapitis
  4. 4.0 4.1 http://www.anatomyexpert.com/structure_detail/5205/
  5. http://abbottcenter.com/bostonpaintherapy/?p=1492