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Radial and Ulnar Arteries – Overview of Arterial Supply to Upper Limb

by James Pickering, PhD
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    00:01 arteries coming from the profunda brachii artery. So now let’s move into the forearm, and we see the direct continuation of the brachial artery. And as the brachial artery pass through the cubital fossa alongside the biceps tendon and the median nerve, we can see we have the brachial tendon, the biceps tendon here, the biceps tendon here.

    00:23 And we can see we have the brachial artery, and we can see we have the median nerve. As it passes through the cubital fossa, the brachial artery is then going to divide into a radial artery and into an ulnar artery. So we’re looking at the anterior view of the forearm of this right upper limb. So, the ulnar artery; the ulnar artery, we can see it here, is going to pass anteriorly through the forearm compartment. It passes in the anterior compartment of the forearm. It passes deep to pronator teres, and it runs alongside, we can see it here, flexor carpi ulnaris. It runs alongside flexor carpi ulnaris. And it’s running alongside the ulnar nerve as well. So we can see the ulnar artery here, and it’s going to run along the deep compartment down alongside flexor carpi ulnaris. The radial artery, that is also going to pass within the anterior compartment, but it runs deep to brachial radialis. So here we can see brachial radialis muscle and the radial artery is running deep to brachial radialis muscle. It exits the forearm by passing laterally around the wrist and it enters the anatomical snuff box, as we mentioned. So here, we can see in a bit more detail. We can see we have the radial artery as it’s passing down deep to brachial radialis, ultimately going towards the hand. And we can see coming off it, we have a recurrent radial artery that’s passing upwards. And this is going to form an anastomosis with what we can see is the radial collateral artery. So here we have an anastomosis formed from the profunda brachii artery and from the radial artery, this anastomosis running up here.

    02:11 We can see we have some important muscular branches passing towards the musculature within the anterior compartment. And on here, we can then see we have the ulnar artery. We can see the ulnar artery running down here. And you can see it’s giving off various branches.

    02:29 We can see we have the ulnar recurrent artery, and that’s going to pass back up in this direction. We can see that clearly on here, the ulnar recurrent artery passing up in this direction. And we can follow the ulnar artery as it passes all the way down within the anterior compartment accompanied by the ulnar nerve. We can see it’s accompanied by the ulnar nerve here, and we can see it’s giving off various branches. We have a posterior interosseous artery here, this is going to pass through the superior aperture of the interosseous membrane. This is the posterior interosseous artery. So, we have numerous anastomosis around the elbow joint, from the radial artery and from the profunda brachii. The radial artery gives rise to the radial recurrent artery that passes upwards and the profunda brachii gives rise to radial collateral arteries that pass downwards. So we have them coming down here. We have the radial collateral arteries coming down and we have the radial recurrent arteries passing up. With regard to the ulnar, this gives rise to anterior and posterior recurrent arteries that pass upwards. And coming from the brachial artery, we have inferior and superior ulnar collateral arteries that pass downwards. And we can see this coming up in this direction and then coming down. So these are forming important anastomosis around the elbow joint. These anastomosis are really important. So if some of the arteries get blocked, there’s a mechanism for compensation to occur. It’s not that significant if some of these branches get damaged or get blocked because there’s an alternative blood supply.

    04:13 We have other branches that are coming from the radial and ulnar arteries. So the ulnar artery will give rise to a common interosseous artery. And this interosseous artery then gives rise to anterior and posterior interosseous branches. And these run either side of the interosseous membrane. So here we can see we’ve got a common interosseous artery here.

    04:35 And the common interosseous artery is then going to, we can see here, dive through the interosseous membrane, and that becomes the posterior interosseous membrane. The anterior interosseous artery is now running deep down in here alongside the interosseous membrane supplying the deep muscles within the anterior compartment. The radial artery, that’s going to give rise to dorsal and palmar carpal branches as they go towards the carpal bones, and we also have these coming from the ulnar artery, dorsal and palmar carpal branches, and this form a nice carpal anastomosis around the carpal bones in the wrist.

    05:17 We’ll see this later on. So now let’s move to the hand and the blood supply to the hand, which


    About the Lecture

    The lecture Radial and Ulnar Arteries – Overview of Arterial Supply to Upper Limb by James Pickering, PhD is from the course Upper Limb Anatomy.


    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Brachial artery
    2. Profunda brachii artery
    3. Ulnar artery
    4. Radial artery
    5. Posterior interosseous artery
    1. Common interosseous artery
    2. Radial recurrent artery
    3. Radial collateral artery
    4. Anterior recurrent artery
    5. Posterior recurrent artery
    1. Ulnar artery
    2. Posterior interosseous artery
    3. Anterior interosseous artery
    4. Profunda brachii artery
    5. Radial artery

    Author of lecture Radial and Ulnar Arteries – Overview of Arterial Supply to Upper Limb

     James Pickering, PhD

    James Pickering, PhD


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