Published online Nov 28, 2014. doi: 10.5319/wjo.v4.i4.17
Revised: August 7, 2014
Accepted: September 4, 2014
Published online: November 28, 2014
Core tip: The tympanic nerve is the first branch arising from the inferior ganglion of the glossopharyngeal nerve. Despite its modest size it has a multitude of functions which are not only limited to the middle ear. In this review we detail the clinical anatomy of the tympanic nerve and its surgical applications in Otolaryngology as they have evolved over the years. We also provide a brief summary of the life and achievements of the indefatigable Ludwig Levin Jacobson, an anatomist and military surgeon, who is credited with the discovery of the tympanic nerve.