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Anatomy Atlases: Atlas of Human Anatomy in Cross Section: Section 7. Lower Limb

Atlas of Human Anatomy in Cross Section: Section 7. Lower Limb

Plate 7.11

Ronald A. Bergman, Ph.D., Adel K. Afifi, M.D., Jean J. Jew, M.D., and Paul C. Reimann, B.S.
Peer Review Status: Externally Peer Reviewed


Plate 7.11

Upper Left Quadrant

Lower Left Quadrant

Lower Right Quadrant

Upper Right Quadrant

1. Articular cartilage
2. Medial patellar ligament
3. Articular cavity

4. Transverse collateral ligament
5. Sartorius m.
6. Great saphenous v.
7. Articular cartilage and medial femoral condyle
8. Intercondylar fossa
9. Tendon m. gracilis
10. Tendon m. semimembranosus
11. Tendon m. semitendinosus
12. Gastrocnemius m. (medial head)

13. Popliteal v. and a.
14. Medial sural cutaneous and tibial nerves
15. Lateral sural cutaneous nerve
16. Gastrocnemius m. (lateral head)
17. Anterior cruciate ligament
18. Common peroneal nerve
19. Plantaris m.
20. Gastrocnemius m. (lateral head)
21. Lateral femoral condyle
22. Tendon m. biceps femoris
23. Fibular collateral ligament
24. Lateral femoral epicondyle

25. Articular cavity
26. Lateral patellar retinaculum
27. Patella (last appearance)
28. Tendon m. quadriceps femoris

This section passes through the lower third of the patella (27). It will not be seen in the next section. The section cuts several important ligaments and a retinaculum, including the lateral patellar (26), anterior cruciate (17), transverse collateral (4), and medial patellar (2).

Note that the sartorius muscle (5) has become a thin band as it crosses over and behind the medial condyle of the femur (7). All other "thigh" muscles have become tendinous--quadriceps femoris (28), biceps femoris (22), semitendinosus (11), semimembranosus (10), and gracilis (9).

The lateral patellar retinaculum (26) is derived from the tendon of vastus lateralis. It is attached to the lateral margin of the patella (nearer to the anterior than the posterior surface) as far as the junction with the patellar ligament, and passing along its sides to the tibia it inserts onto the oblique ridge. It extends as far as the fibular collateral ligament. The fibers of the lateral patellar retinaculum blend with the iliotibial tract of the fascia lata. The patellar retinacula (lateral and medial [21) become inseparably fused with the fibrous membrane of the articular capsule.

The fibular collateral ligament (23) is a strong round cord, about 5 cm long, attached proximally to a tubercle on the lateral epicondyle of the femur, just proximal and posterior to a groove from which the popliteus muscle arises. Distally, it is fixed to the middle of the lateral surface of the head of the fibula, about I cm or more anterior to the apex. Superficial to it lies the tendon of the biceps muscle (22), which bifurcates to surround the distal extremity of the ligament; deep to it are the popliteus tendon in its sheath, the inferior lateral (genicular) vessels of the knee, and a twig of the common peroneal nerve.

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