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Sunday, July 18, 2010

Location of Posterior Tibial Artery

The pictures below demonstrate the location of the posterior tibial artery in relation to surrounding structures (surface anatomy on below, gross anatomy on above).

Location of Posterior Tibial Artery

Palpating Posterior Tibial Artery

1-If there is a lot of edema, you will have to push your way through the fluid-filled tissue to get down to the level of the artery.
2-If you are unable to palpate a pulse, find a doppler machine, which should be present on any inpatient floor or ER, and use it to identify the location of the artery. Mark the place with a pen and then go back and again try to feel it with your fingers. In this way, you will be able to determine if the vessel was not palpable on the basis of limited blood flow or if you are simply having a "technical" problem.

Using Doppler Device to Identify Posterior Tibial Artery
Pulses are rated on a scale ranging from 0 (not palpable) to 2+ (normal). As with edema, this is very subjective and it will take you a while to develop a sense of relative values. In the event that the pulse is not palpable, the doppler signal generated is also rated, ranging again from 0 to 2+.

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