Equine Vessels and Nerves of the Pelvic Limb

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Exam I

Femoral Artery

• Direct continuation of the external iliac artery
• Passes through the vascular lacuna
• Has 7 Branches: superficial circumflex iliac artery, lateral circumflex femoral artery, proximal caudal femoral artery, saphenous artery, descending genicular artery, middle caudal femoral and caudal femoral artery.
• Continues distally as the popliteal artery

Saphenous Artery

• Branches off the femoral artery
• Emerges with the medial saphenous vein and continues with it
• Just above the hock anastamoses from caudal tibial artery and joins with caudal femoral before branching
• Supplies blood to the distal limb

Caudal Femoral Artery

• Analogous to the distal caudal femoral artery

Popliteal Artery

• Continuation of the femoral artery
• Passes between the heads of the gastrocnemius muscle, close to the caudal aspect of the stifle joint
• Branches to give off the caudal tibial artery
• Continues distally between the tibia and fibula as the cranial tibial artery

Caudal Tibial Artery

• Small branch that arises from the popliteal artery

Cranial Tibial Artery

• Continuation of the popliteal artery as it passes between the tibia and fibula
• It runs along the cranial aspect of the tibia
• Becomes the dorsal pedal artery as it crosses the tarsocrural joint

Dorsal Pedal Artery

• Continuation of the cranial tibial as it crosses the tarsocrural joint
• Branches to give off the perforating tarsal artery
• Continues as the dorsal metatarsal artery III

Perforating Tarsal Artery

• Arises from the dorsal pedal artery
• Crosses the flexor surface of the tarsus
• Passes plantarly through the tarsal canal

Dorsal Metatarsal Artery III (Great Metatarsal)

• Continuation of the dorsal pedal artery
• Lies in the dorsal groove between Mt3 and Mt4
• Anastamoses with branches from saphenous artery at the level of the fetlock
• Divides to become the medial and lateral plantar digital arteries
• Major blood supply to the hoof
• Used to take pulse

Medial and Lateral Plantar Digital Arteries

• Arises as the continuation of the dorsal metatarsal artery III

Terminal Arch

...

Medial Saphenous Vein

• Emerges near the dividion between the sartorius and gracilis muscles
• Esp. large and prominent vein in the horse
• It divides into cranial and caudal branches

Lateral Saphenous Vein

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Proximal Femoral (Deep Inguinal) Lymph Node

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Subiliac Lymph Node

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Ischiatic Lymph Node

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Femoral Nerve

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Saphenous Nerve

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Obturator Nerve

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Cranial Gluteal Nerve

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Caudal Gluteal Nerve

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Scatic Nerve

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Tibial Nerve

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Caudal Cutaneous Sural Nerve

Cutaneous distribution to caudal crus

Medial Plantar Nerve

Cutaneous distribution to mediplantar metatarsal

Medial Plantar Digital Nerve

• Cutaneous distribution to medial digit
• Has dorsal branches that supply cutaneous distribution to dorsal digit

Lateral Plantar Nerve

Supplies interosseus muscle and cutaneous distribution to lateroplantar metatarsus

Lateral Plantar Digital Nerve

Cutaneous distribution to lateral digit
• Has dorsal branches that supply cutaneous distribution to dorsal digit

Plantar Metatarsal Nerves

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Communicating Branch between Medial and Lateral Plantar Nerves

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Common Peroneal (Fibular) Nerve

• Supplies lateral extensor muscle, cutaneous distribution to lateral leg
• Damage results in knuckling over

Superficial Peroneal Nerve

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Deep Peroneal Nerve

• Cutaneous distribution to caudal crus
• Muscular branch supplies cranial tibial and long digital extensor muscles
• Gives off medial and lateral metatarsal nerves

Dorsal Metatarsal Nerves

Cutaneous distribution to dorsal digit

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