The ear ossicles are the three smallest bones in the human body, the malleus, the incus and the stapes, and they help in amplifying the sound vibrations and passing them on to the inner ear. The first is attached to the tympanic membrane, the last to the fenestra vestibule’s circumference, the incus being placed between and connected to both by delicate articulations.
How do the ossicles work?
- The purpose of the auditory ossicles also called the ossicular chain is to transmit sound via a chain reaction of vibrations that connects the eardrum to the inner ear and cochlea.
- The auditory chain reaction starts when the sound reaches the eardrum (tympanic membrane).
- The vibrational pressure is passed to the malleus and articulated bone that flexes at one of the two incudomalleolar joints.
- The vibration is then passed to the incus which flexes at another incudomalleolar joint before transferring the impulses to the stapes, the bone of which not only looks like a stirrup but is the smallest in the body