The hyoid is a horseshoe-shaped bone in the front of the neck. between the chin and the thyroid cartilage (Adam's apple). At rest, it lies at the level of the mandible in the front and the third cervical vertebra behind. Unlike other bones, the hyoid is not directly connected to other bones. It is connected only to muscles and ligaments. The hyoid aids in tongue movement and swallowing. The hyoid bone provides attachment to the muscles of the floor of the mouth and the tongue above, the larynx below, and the epiglottis and pharynx behind.
Fracture and applied anatomy[change | edit source]
Due to its position, the hyoid bone does not fracture easily. In a suspected case of murder, a fractured hyoid strongly indicates throttling or strangulation However, this is not the case in children and adolescents, because their hyoid bone is still flexible as ossification is yet to be completed.