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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 7.12

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 7.12

Upper Left Quadrant

Lower Left Quadrant

Lower Right Quadrant

Upper Right Quadrant

1. Medial patellar retinaculum

2. Great saphenous v.
3. Sartorius m.
4. Tendon m. gracilis
5. Tendon m. semimembranosus
6. Bursa m. semimembranosus and posterior cruciate ligament
7. Tendon m. semitendinosus
8. Gastrocnemius m. (medial head)

9. Popliteal v. and a.
10. Tibial and lateral sural cutaneous nerves
11. Anterior cruciate ligament
12. Gastrocnemius m. (lateral head)
13. Medial sural cutaneous nerve
14. Small saphenous v. and plantaris m.
15. Common peroneal nerve
16. Gastrocnemius m. (lateral head)
17. Biceps femoris m. and tendon
18. Fibular collateral ligament

19. Lateral patellar retinaculum
20. Articular cavity
21. Patellar ligament

This section passes through the patellar ligament (21) for the first time. Important ligaments also identified for the first time include the posterior cruciate (6) and the medial patellar retinaculum (1). Note that the sartorius muscle is becoming tendinous and that this begins on its medial surface, which is adjacent to the medial femoral condyle.

The posterior cruciate ligament (6) is stronger and less oblique than the anterior (11) one. It is fixed distally to the greater portion of the posterior intercondylar area, especially the lateral and posterior portions, being joined by fibers that are attached between the intercondylar tubercles. It extends to the anterior part of the lateral surface of the medial condyle of the femur, having a wide crescent-like attachment, about 1.5 cm in width, just proximal to the anterior surface. At the tibia, posteriorly, it is joined directly with the oblique ligament; anteriorly, it passes proximal to the posterior extremity of the medial meniscus; laterally, it receives slips from the lateral meniscus and from the anterior and posterior meniscofemoral ligaments, which join it anteriorly and posteriorly and extend with it to be attached to the femur. At the level of the intercondylar eminence of the tibia, the two cruciate ligaments are bound together so that no space exists between their tibial attachments and the point of their decussation.

The medial patellar retinaculum (1) is derived from the tendon of vastus medialis muscle. It is attached to the patella along its medial border, as far as the attachment of the patellar ligament, and passing along its sides to the tibia it attaches to an oblique ridge and extends as far as the tibial collateral ligament. Fibers of the medial patellar retinaculum extend distal to the oblique ridge to blend with the periosteum of the shaft. Both patellar retinacula become inseparably joined with the fibrous membrane of the articular capsule.

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