Popliteal Fossa

The popliteal fossa is a diamond shaped area found on the posterior side of the knee.

BORDERS OF POPLITEAL FOSSA

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The popliteal fossa is diamond shaped structure with four borders. These borders are formed by the muscles of the posterior compartment of the leg and thigh.

(a) Superomedial Border 

Semimembranosus.

(b) Superolateral Border 

Biceps femoris.

(c) Inferomedial Border

Medial head of the gastrocnemius.

(d) Inferolateral Border

Lateral head of the gastrocnemius and plantaris.

FLOOR

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The Popliteal Fossa also has a floor and is made up of :

(a) Popliteal surface of the femur

(b) The capsule of the knee joint and the oblique popliteal ligament

(c) Strong fascia covering the popliteus muscle

ROOF

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From Superficial to Deep :

(a) Skin

(b) Superficial fascia, which contains the small saphenous vein, the terminal branch of the posterior cutaneous nerve of the thigh, posterior division of the medial cutaneous nerve, lateral sural cutaneous nerve, and medial sural cutaneous nerve

(c) Deep fascia or popliteal fascia

CONTENTS

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Structures include (from superficial to deep):

(a) Tibial nerve

(b) Popliteal vein

(c) Popliteal artery, a continuation of the femoral artery

(d) Small saphenous vein

(e) Common fibular nerve begins at superior angle of popliteal fossa

(f) Popliteal lymph nodes and vessels

CLINICAL SIGNIFICANCE

BAKER’S CYST

POPLITEAL ANEURYSM

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