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External iliac artery

Other Terms: Arteria iliaca externa, Artère iliaque externe


The external iliac artery is the direct continuation of the common iliac artery. It begins at the bifurcation of the common iliac artery at the sacroiliac synchondrosis and. It then runs along the brim of the true pelvis to the inguinal ligament. It terminates at a point midway between the anterior superior spine of the ilium and the symphysis pubis behind the inguinal ligament. At this point, it becomes the femoral artery. The external iliac artery is about eight to ten in length. Like the common iliac, it lies behind the peritoneum. It is also covered by a condensed portion of extraperitoneal connective tissue, the iliac fascia. Anteriorly, it comes in relation with the genital branch of the genitofemoral nerve. It crosses the lower third of the artery obliquely; and at its termination with the circumflex iliac vein, which crosses it to empty into the external iliac vein, at its lower part with the spermatic vessels. The ductus deferens and, in the female, the ovarian vessels cross it to gain the cavity of the pelvis, and the ureter sometimes passes in front of it, instead of crossing the common iliac artery. The external iliac lymphatic glands lie along the course of the artery. Posteriorly, the artery comes in relation with its vein in the upper portion of its course. In the lower part of its course the vein lies medial to it; then with the medial border of the psoas muscle, and lower down, behind the inguinal ligament, with the tendon of the psoas. The iliac fascia lies behind it. On its medial side is the external iliac vein, the peritoneum, and the iliac fascia. They descend to become the pelvic fascia, the ductus deferens in the male, and the ovarian vessels in the female. The right external iliac vein lies to the medial side of the external iliac artery at first. However, it gradually passes behind it. The genitofemoral nerve, the psoas muscle, and the iliac fascia are on its lateral side. The branches of the external iliac artery are the inferior epigastric, the deep circumflex iliac artery, and a few small branches to the psoas muscle and lymphatic glands.


Arteria iliaca externa


Artère iliaque externe


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