Middle genicular artery
Citation, DOI and article data
- location: knee
- origin: popliteal artery
- supply: cruciate ligaments
The middle genicular artery originates from the anterior aspect of the popliteal artery approximately 3-5 cm above the knee joint line variably having a common origin with one of the other genicular arteries 1-3. It descends along the anterolateral aspect of the popliteal fossa, pierces the posterior knee capsule in the middle of the femoral condyles and is accompanied by two veins 1,2. Within the joint, it travels along the distal part of the posterior cruciate ligament to the anterior cruciate ligament. The length apparently ranges from 3-5 cm with about half of it being extraarticular 1,2.
The middle genicular artery gives small branches to the anterior and posterior cruciate ligaments and their lining tissues 1.
The middle genicular artery participates in the supply of the following structures 1,2:
History and etymology
The intraarticular path of the middle genicular artery was described by Raffaele Scapinelli in 1968 2.
- 1. Salaria H & Atkinson R. Anatomic Study of the Middle Genicular Artery. J Orthop Surg (Hong Kong). 2008;16(1):47-49. doi:10.1177/230949900801600112
- 2. de Carvalho R, Ramos L, Novaretti J et al. Relationship Between the Middle Genicular Artery and the Posterior Structures of the Knee: A Cadaveric Study. Orthop J Sports Med. 2016;4(12):2325967116673579. doi:10.1177/2325967116673579
- 3. Shahid S, Saghir N, Cawley O, Saujani S. A Cadaveric Study of the Branching Pattern and Diameter of the Genicular Arteries: A Focus on the Middle Genicular Artery. J Knee Surg. 2015;28(5):417-24. doi:10.1055/s-0035-1549021