Giacomini vein

Last revised by Kieran Kusel on 2 Aug 2020

The Giacomini vein or thigh extension of the small saphenous vein refers to a variation in lower limb venous anatomy whereby the small saphenous vein (SSV) continues through to the thigh as a distinct branch.

The persistence of this vein may play a contributory role in the development of chronic venous disease. It is, therefore, an important vein to assess during duplex venous ultrasound assessment of the lower limb. 


It has a reported prevalence in some form or another of ~75% in the general population 4,5.

History and etymology

It is named after Carlo Giacomini (1840-1898) late Professor of Anatomy at the University of Turin, Italy, who presented a thesis on superficial and deep lower limb venous anatomy in July 1873 3,6. The band of Giacomini and Giacomini vertebrae are also named after this Italian anatomist and neuroscientist 6.

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