Structure of the vestibular organ

a. It is a membranous labyrinth consisting of three perpendicular semicircular canals, a utricle, and a saccule. The semicircular canals detect angular acceleration or rotation. The utricle and saccule detect linear acceleration.

b. The canals are filled with endolymph and are bathed in perilymph.

c. The receptors are hair cells located at the end of each semicircular canal. Cilia on the hair cells are embedded in a gelatinous structure called the cupula. A single long cilium is called the kinocilium; smaller cilia are called stereocilia (Figure 2-7).

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