21.09.2023 | Original Article
Navigation of femoral and popliteal artery around the knee with CT angiography: implications for surgical interventions
Surgical and Radiologic Anatomy
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Uncertainty about the exact position of the femoral and popliteal arteries in the medial thigh and posterior knee might increase vascular complications in surgical procedures. This study aimed to document femoral and popliteal arteries in the medial thigh and around the knee to assist surgeons in developing safer surgical approaches.
The study included 120 patients—180 lower limbs—who underwent CT angiography (CTA) of the lower extremity. The distance from the femoral artery to the anterior border, midsagittal axis, and posterior border of the femur and the popliteal artery to the medial, lateral, and midpoint posterior cortex of the proximal tibia was measured in two- and three-dimensional CTA images.
The femoral artery was found to be on average 236.93 ± 29.61 mm, 195.34 ± 26.12 mm, and 146.28 ± 33.18 mm away from the adductor tubercle at the anterior, midsagittal axis, and posterior borders of the femur, correspondingly. The popliteal artery was to be located on average 5.40 ± 2.50 mm posterior to the midpoint of the plateau tibia at the joint line.
Considering the mentioned femoral/popliteal artery distances to the femur and proximal tibia would direct surgeons to the safe zones for more accurate surgical approaches in the medial thigh and around the knee when performing osteotomies, knee arthroplasty, arthroscopy, and trauma surgeries, to reduce possible vascular damages.
Level of evidence: IV.