Tibia fibula (AP view)

Amanda Er and Sarah Gorton et al.

The tibia fibula anteroposterior view is part of a two view series of the entire tibiafibula, and both the knee and ankle joint. 

The tibia fibula AP view is performed for evaluation of the lower leg in patients who have suffered trauma or are suspected to have a foreign body or bone lesion including osteomyelitis. If one is concerned about the ankle joint, the ankle series is more appropriate, if the knee is the point of focus, a knee series.

  • the patient may be supine or sitting upright with their leg straighten on the table
  • the foot is in dorsiflexion
  • the toes will be pointing directly toward the ceiling
  • anteroposterior projection
  • centering point
    • midpoint of the tibia
  • collimation
    • laterally to the skin margins
    • superior to the knee joint
    • inferior to the ankle joint
  • orientation  
    • portrait or diagonal depending on limb length  
  • detector size
    • 35 cm x 43 cm or 43 cm x 35 cm
  • exposure
    • 50-60 kVp
    • 3-5 mAs
  • SID
    • 100 cm
  • grid
    • no

The tibia and fibula are demonstrated in the AP position in their entirety from the knee joint to the ankle.    

The lateral and medial malleoli of the distal fibula and tibia are in profile.

The tibiotalar joint space and the knee joint space are open. 

This view can be thought of as the literal anteroposterior of the tibia.

Often, this view is requested following major trauma, with a suspected mid-shaft fracture. Keep this in mind when moving the patient as they may be in extreme pain.

Consider the use of a modified horizontal beam if needed. 

In some cases the patient's limb will not fit on the one image, it is better to take two images at both points then perform one sub-par projection in the center if both the ankle and the knee joints are not present it is not a complete series.

Radiographic views

Article information

rID: 41409
Section: Radiography
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Tibia fibula: AP radiographic view

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1: normal tibia fibula
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  • Case 2: normal tibia fibula (stitched image)
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  • Case 3: distal tibia stress fracture with ORIF
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  • Case 4: tibial stress fracture
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  • Case 5: tibia and fibular fractures
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  • Case 6: cellulitis
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