Anatomical pattern of the dorsalis pedis artery among black Kenyans.

Amuti T, Rwegasira E, Ouko I, Ongeti K, Ogeng’o J. 2019.


Knowledge of the anatomical pattern of dorsalis pedis artery is important during evaluation of peripheral circulation, peripheral vascular disease, microvascular flap, ankle and foot surgery. Reports from other populations on the pattern show wide disparity suggesting ethnic and geographical differences. Data from black African populations is scanty. This study therefore examined the anatomical pattern of dorsalis pedis artery among adult black Kenyans. The cadaveric dissection study on 30 formalin fixed specimens evaluated the origin, position, course and branching pattern of the dorsalis pedis artery. The data were analysed using SPSS for means, frequency and standard deviation. Student t – test was used to determine side differences at 95% confidence interval where P – Value of <5% was taken as statistically significant. The artery was consistently present, as a continuation of the anterior tibial artery. It ran 4.6 mm ± 2.1 mm from the medial malleolus, and about 2.5 ± 0.3mm from the medial border of the base of the first metatarsal bone. The mean was 4.76 mm on the right, and 4.56 mm on the left. The difference was statistically significant (P<0.05). Three branching patterns were observed. The conventional pattern was observed in only 47% of cases. The extensor hallucis longus tendon most frequently crossed the artery above the ankle joint. There were no cases of crossing below the ankle. These observations reveal that the dorsalis pedis artery is consistently present, high, relatively medialised, and displays an atypical branching pattern. Due care should be taken during surgery. Preoperative ultrasound evaluation is recommended. .

Key words: Dorsalis pedis, origin, branching course, ankle joint

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