Lateral pontine syndrome

A lateral pontine syndrome is a lesion which is similar to the lateral medullary syndrome, but because it occurs in the pons, it also involves the cranial nerve nuclei of the pons.

Lateral pontine syndrome


Damage to the following areas produces symptoms (from medial to lateral):

Structure affected Effect
Lateral spinothalamic tract Contralateral loss of pain and temperature from the trunk and extremities.
Facial nucleus & facial Nerve (CN.VII) (1) Ipsilateral paralysis of the upper and lower face (lower motor neuron lesion). (2) Ipsilateral loss of lacrimation and reduced salivation. (3) Ipsilateral loss of taste from the anterior two-thirds of the tongue. (4) Loss of corneal reflex (efferent limb).
Spinal trigeminal nucleus and tract Ipsilateral loss of pain and temperature sensation from the face (facial hemianesthesia)
Vestibular Nuclei and intraaxial nerve fibers Nystagmus, nausea, vomiting, and vertigo
Cochlear nuclei and intraaxial nerve fibers Hearing loss - ipsilateral central deafness
Middle & inferior cerebellar peduncle Ipsilateral limb and gait ataxia
Descending sympathetic tract Ipsilateral Horner's syndrome (ptosis, miosis, & anhydrosis)


It can be caused by an interruption to the blood supply of the anterior inferior cerebellar artery or circumferential arteries.[1]




  1. Campbell, William W. (2012). DeJong's The Neurologic Examination. Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins. p. 338. ISBN 9781469817521.

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