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Fibula and Tibial – Joints of Lower Limb

by James Pickering, PhD
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    00:01 ligament here. We then have some collateral ligaments, the fibular and the tibial collateral ligaments, and these are thickenings on the medial and lateral aspects of the knee joint.

    00:12 We have the fibular collateral ligament which we can see running down here. It’s running from the lateral epicondyle of the femur, and it’s passing all the way down to the head of the fibula. So here we can see the fibular collateral ligament. This is a particularly strong rounded cord, and it helps to prevent the adduction of the tibia. So it helps to prevent the medial, pointing the medial deviation of the tibia by stabilizing this lateral aspect.

    00:44 We also have the tibial collateral ligament, and that’s running on the medial side.

    00:50 So this helps to prevent the abduction of the tibia away from the knee joint as it reinforces this medial aspect. It’s passing from the medial epicondyle of the femur to the medial surface of the tibia. And whereas, the fibular was this strong rounded cord, this is a flat band. And we can see the tibial collateral ligament here. Now let’s have a look inside the knee joint, and there’s a series of structures I want to detail. Here, we have the cruciate ligaments and the menisci. Here, we have a flexed knee, and we can see we have the femoral condyles sitting on the tibial plateau. And here we have the lateral and medial menisci, and here we have the cruciate ligament forming this cross through the center of the knee joint. In a section looking down onto the tibial plateau anteriorly here and posteriorly here, we can see where the posterior and the anterior cruciate ligaments are originating from. So the cruciate ligaments form this cross-like arrangement running from the tibia to the femur. And they’re important in limiting the rotation of the knee to about ten degrees.

    02:03 Due to that orientation, one of the cruciate ligaments is always taut when the knee assumes a different position. So whatever the position the knee is assuming, one of these cruciate ligaments will be taut, and that increases the stability. So let’s start with the anterior cruciate ligament, and this is a weaker ligament. It’s weaker than the posterior. Here, we can see the anterior cruciate ligament passing from the anterior intercondylar area here of the tibia. We can also see it passing from this region here, the anterior intercondylar area - so in between the condyles of the tibia. It’s then passing posteriorly and superiorly heading towards the lateral condyle. So it passes posteriorly, it passes superiorly, and laterally to the lateral condyle. And we can see it passing in this direction as well. The anterior cruciate ligament is going to prevent the posterior rolling of the femoral condyles on the tibial plateau when it’s flexed when the knee is flexed. So here we can see with a flexed knee that the femoral condyles won’t be able to move posteriorly because they’ll be limited via this anterior cruciate ligament. It’s also going to prevent the posterior displacement of the femur on the tibia, and also preventing hyperextension of the knee. When flexed, the tibia cannot be pulled forward. So because of this attachment, when flexed, the tibia won’t be able to be pulled forward because of the attachment of the anterior cruciate ligament. So think about the position of the anterior cruciate ligament and think about how keeping that ligament taut prevents various movements of the knee. The posterior cruciate ligament is stronger than the anterior, and it’s running from the posterior intercondylar area of the tibia. And it passes superiorly and medially to the medial condyle. So here, we can see the posterior cruciate ligament passing in this direction. We can see it here passing from the posterior area of the tibial plateau.

    04:17 The posterior cruciate ligament is passing superiorly and medially towards the medial condyle. The posterior cruciate ligament prevents the anterior rolling of the femoral condyles on the tibial plateau when it’s fully extended. So when the knee joint is extended, the anterior movement of the femoral condyles is prevented. It also prevents the anterior displacement of the femur on the tibia or the posterior displacement of the tibia. It helps to prevent the hyperflexion of the knee. And when the knee is flexed, the tibia cannot be pushed backwards. So when the knee joint is flexed, the posterior cruciate ligament prevents the tibia from being pushed backwards. Now let’s talk about the menisci, and these are crescent-shaped plates of cartilage on the tibial plateau. And they help to deepen the articular surface.

    05:18 They act as shock absorbers, and they’re thickest at the margins where they attach to the fibrous capsule. So they’re thickest on the lateral and the medial extremes where they’re attaching to the fibrous capsule. Centrally, the menisci are thin and they’re firmly attached at the intercondylar area of the tibia via coronary ligaments.

    05:42 Here, we can see a menisci is running around here. We can see this crescent-shaped menisci running all the way around here. We’ve got the medial meniscus. And here, we’ve got the lateral meniscus. We can see the anterior aspects of the menisci are connected via these transverse ligaments of the knee. So this transverse ligament now is connecting the two anterior aspects of the menisci. And centrally like I said, they are thin but they’re firmly attached to the intercondylar area via the coronary ligaments. The medial menisci is C-shaped. So here we can see the C-shaped menisci. It attaches anteriorly to the intercondylar area roundabout the attachment of the anterior cruciate ligament. And posteriorly, it attaches near the posterior cruciate ligament on the intercondylar area. They firmly attach to the tibial collateral ligament. So the medial menisci is attached to the tibial collateral ligament. The lateral menisci are almost circular, and it is more mobile. Popliteus separates it from the fibular collateral ligament. So popliteus muscle, remember, running along the posterior aspect from the lateral aspect of the lateral condyle down onto the fibula is separating the lateral menisci from the fibular collateral ligament. The posterior meniscofemoral ligaments, we can see here the posterior meniscofemoral ligament joins the lateral menisci to the posterior cruciate ligament, and also the medial femoral condyle. Now let’s move on


    About the Lecture

    The lecture Fibula and Tibial – Joints of Lower Limb by James Pickering, PhD is from the course Lower Limb Anatomy.


    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Adduction.
    2. Flexion.
    3. Plantarflexion.
    4. Reduction.
    5. Lateral flexion.
    1. Flat band.
    2. Ring shaped band.
    3. Cord shaped.
    4. Y shaped band.
    5. Torturous band.
    1. Weaker.
    2. Stronger.
    3. More rotated.
    4. Less rotated.
    5. Similar in all regards.
    1. Thickest on the anterior extremes.
    2. Act as shock absorbers.
    3. Attach to the fibrous capsule.
    4. Deepen the articular surfaces.
    5. Connected to the tibia by coronary ligaments.

    Author of lecture Fibula and Tibial – Joints of Lower Limb

     James Pickering, PhD

    James Pickering, PhD


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