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Foot – Overview of Arterial Supply to Lower Limb

by James Pickering, PhD
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    00:00 So now if we look at the blood supply to the foot, we can see we’ve got the dorsum of the foot where we’ve got the direct continuation of the anterior tibial to become the dorsalis pedis artery giving rise to numerous branches. Here, we’ve got two dissections. We saw them when we looked at the sole of the foot. Branch is coming from the posterior tibial onto the sole following the lateral and medial plantar nerves. If we look at the dorsum of the foot, the anterior tibial artery enters deep to extensor retinaculum and it becomes the dorsalis pedis. We can see as it passes through the dorsum of the foot, it gives rise to the lateral and to the medial tarsal arteries and these supply the tarsals. It then continues over the dorsum of the foot and it gives rise to the arcuate artery. And this occurs just proximal to the base of the first metatarsal. The arcuate artery emerges. It then carries on distally and it eventually bifurcates into the deep plantar artery which goes deep down into the sole of the foot, and the first dorsal metatarsal artery which we can see here.

    01:15 The arcuate artery is going to run laterally across the dorsum of the foot, and it may well form an important anastomosis with the lateral tarsal artery coming here. So we have a nice little network of blood supply on the dorsum of the foot. But let’s concentrate on this deep plantar artery passing down in between the two metatarsals. We can also see the same happens here coming off the arcuate artery, branches going down in between the other metatarsals.

    01:45 So the second, third, and fourth metatarsal arteries emerge from the arcuate artery and give off digital branches. These digital branches go on to supply the toes. We can see them, digital branches, coming forward to supply the toes, these dorsal digital arteries.

    02:06 The deep plantar artery passes between the heads of the first dorsal interosseous muscle and it forms the deep plantar arch by anasotomosing with the lateral plantar artery. So the posterior tibial artery, it divides into the lateral and medial plantar arteries deep to the flexor retinaculum as a direct continuation of the posterior tibial. So we can see it here, posterior tibial then bifurcating into the medial and to the lateral. The medial plantar is the smaller of the two and supplies muscles associated with the big toe, and also the skin on the medial surface. It gives off some digital branches as well. The lateral plantar though is much more substantial. It’s the bigger of the two. It passes between the first and second layers of muscles, and it gives rise to the deep plantar arch at the base of the fifth metatarsal. Here, we can see we’ve got the lateral plantar artery, and then it’s running around and we can see its giving rise to the deep plantar arch. It’s giving rise to palmar metatarsal arteries, which we can see here. And these gives rise to plantar digital arteries that are running towards the digits. But medially, this deep plantar arch anastomosis with the deep plantar artery of dorsalis pedis. So dorsalis pedis gives rise to the deep plantar artery, and that unites with the lateral plantar artery to form the deep plantar arch.

    03:44 And this is running along the sole of the foot. So in this lecture, we’ve looked at the general overview of the blood supply to the lower limb. We’ve looked at the femoral artery.

    03:57 Now it principally supplies the anterior thigh. We’ve looked at the profunda femoris that supplies the posterior thigh, the obturator artery supplying the medial aspect of the thigh.

    04:07 And then we looked at the gluteal arteries, superior and inferior, and how the inferior gluteal can form the cruciate anastomosis with contributions from the profunda femoris.

    04:19 We then looked at the popliteal artery and the genicular arteries to supply the knee.

    04:25 We looked at tibial arteries, both anterior and posterior, and then plantar arteries which supply the sole of the foot, the dorsalis pedis which supplies the dorsum of the foot and the formation of the deep plantar arch.


    About the Lecture

    The lecture Foot – Overview of Arterial Supply to Lower Limb by James Pickering, PhD is from the course Lower Limb Anatomy.


    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Adductor hiatus
    2. Popliteal fossa
    3. Femoral triangle
    4. Medial compartment of the thigh
    1. Genicular
    2. Lateral circumflex
    3. Medial circumflex
    4. Profunda femoris artery
    1. Anterior tibial artery.
    2. Articulate artery.
    3. Deep planter artery.
    4. Posterior tibial artery.
    5. Fibular artery.
    1. Lateral and medial.
    2. Posterior and anterior.
    3. Superficial and deep.
    4. Left and right.
    5. Superior and inferior.

    Author of lecture Foot – Overview of Arterial Supply to Lower Limb

     James Pickering, PhD

    James Pickering, PhD


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