Vol. 33, Nš 1

Anatomical variation of the ulnar artery: clinical and developmental significance

Ghosh, B. ; Yadav, S.; Virendra Budhiraja; Dass, P. K.; Rakhi Rastogi; Chowdhury, S.

KEYWORDS: brachial artery, superficial ulnar artery, vascular variation, radial artery, superficial palmar arch.

ABSTRACT: Introduction: Variation of the ulnar artery in the upper limb is uncommon. The existence of such a variant is of particular clinical significance, as these arteries are more susceptible to trauma, and can be easily confused with superficial veins during medical and surgical procedures, potentially leading to iatrogenic distal limb ischemia. Case report: During routine dissection we observed a unilateral case of superficial ulnar artery in a 60-year-old male cadaver. It originated from the left brachial artery in the middle of the arm, near to insertion of coracobrachialis muscle. From its origin, it passed downwards in the medial part of arm behind the median nerve and forearm in a superficial plane compared to normal ulnar artery. In the hand, the superficial ulnar artery anastomosed with the palmar branch of the radial artery, creating the superficial palmar arch. Brachial artery divided into the radial and common interosseous arteries in the cubital fossa. The normal ulnar artery was absent. The existence of superficial ulnar artery is undeniably of interest to the clinicians as well as to the anatomists.