The foramen lacerum (from Latin torn hole ) is an opening in the bony base of the skull . It is blurred by the rocky part ( pars petrosa ) of the temporal bone ( os temporale ), by the large wing of the sphenoid bone ( os sphenoidale ) and a small part of the occiput ( os occipitale ).
The foramen lacerum connects the middle cranial fossa ( fossa cranii media ) of the inner skull base ( base cranii interna ) to the outer skull base ( base cranii externa ). It provides a passage for the large and small rock nerve as well as the deep rock nerve ( Nervus petrosus major , Nervus petrosus minor and Nervus petrosus profundus ). The rest of the foramen is closed in the living by fibrous cartilage tissue.