Internal Jugular Vein

The Internal Jugular is the largest vein of the head and neck. It is formed at the base of the skull where the sigmoid sinus ends. The brain, cranial cavity, skull, face and viscera of the neck are drained by the internal jugular vein. Its tributaries are the lingual, common facial, sternocleidomastoid, and superior and middle thyroid veins. The right internal jugular vein is preferred because it is usually larger and straighter.

A needle/catheter may be inserted into the internal jugular vein for diagnostic or therapeutic purposes.