Deep inside the head is the inner ear, which contains 3 small, fluid-filled structures called the semicircular canals (ducts). Each duct has a swelling at the end called the ampulla. Within the ampulla are tiny "balance" receptors called crista.
Review Date 5/14/2017
Updated by: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.