The lining of the larynx is made of stratified ciliated columnar epithelium.
What is the larynx?
The larynx (voice box) is an organ located in the anterior neck. It is a component of the respiratory tract. The larynx structure is primarily cartilaginous and is held together by a series of ligaments and membranes. Internally, the laryngeal muscles move components of the larynx for phonation and breathing.
Anatomically, the internal cavity of the larynx can be divided into three sections:
- Supraglottis – From the inferior surface of the epiglottis to the vestibular folds (false vocal cords).
- Glottis – Contains vocal cords and 1 cm below them. The opening between the vocal cords is known as rima glottidis, the size of which is altered by the muscles of phonation.
- Subglottis – From the inferior border of the glottis to the inferior border of the cricoid cartilage.
Function of Larynx
- The larynx protects the lower airways, facilitates respiration, and plays a key role in phonation. In humans, the protective and respiratory functions are compromised in favour of its phonatory function.
- As a primary function, the larynx provides a carefully guarded air passageway between the pharynx and the trachea.
- The larynx also houses the vocal folds and ligaments that produce the voice sounds.