Inferior epigastric artery

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Artery: Inferior epigastric artery
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Right inferior epigastric artery - view from inside of abdomen. (Inferior epigastric vessels labeled at upper left.)
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The abdominal inguinal ring. (Inf. epigastric artery labeled at center left.)
Latin arteria epigastrica inferior
Gray's subject #156 623
Source superior epigastric artery   
Branches external iliac artery
Vein inferior epigastric vein

Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]



In human anatomy, inferior epigastric artery refers to the artery that arises from the external iliac artery and anastomoses with the superior epigastric artery. Along its course, it is accompanied by a similarly named vein, the inferior epigastric vein.

Course

It arises from the external iliac, immediately above the inguinal ligament.

It curves forward in the subperitoneal tissue, and then ascends obliquely along the medial margin of the abdominal inguinal ring; continuing its course upward, it pierces the transversalis fascia, and, passing in front of the linea semicircularis, ascends between the Rectus abdominis and the posterior lamella of its sheath.

It finally divides into numerous branches, which anastomose, above the umbilicus, with the superior epigastric branch of the internal mammary (internal thoracic artery) and with the lower intercostal arteries.

As the inferior epigastric artery passes obliquely upward from its origin it lies along the lower and medial margins of the abdominal inguinal ring, and behind the commencement of the spermatic cord.

The vas deferens, as it leaves the spermatic cord in the male, and the round ligament of the uterus in the female, winds around the lateral and posterior aspects of the artery.

Additional images

See also

External link

This article was originally based on an entry from a public domain edition of Gray's Anatomy. As such, some of the information contained herein may be outdated. Please edit the article if this is the case, and feel free to remove this notice when it is no longer relevant.



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