Brachial artery

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The brachial artery is the continuation of the axillary artery in the upper arm.

Brachial artery
Brachial artery.png
Relations of the brachial artery
System: Arterial
Function: Blood supply to upper limb
Origin: Axillary artery
Branches: Profunda brachii, nutrient artery to humerus, superior ulnar collateral artery, inferior ulnar collateral artery, radial artery, ulnar artery
Arterial supply: To coracobrachialis, biceps brachii, brachialis
Venous drainage:
Lymphatic drainage:
Vertebral levels:
Search for Brachial artery in Gray's.


Surface Anatomy

The pulsation of the artery can be felt throughout its course, running superficially in the medial part of the upper limb.

Anatomical Course

The artery begins at the inferior border of teres major, running medially beside the humerus. It moves anteriorly as it descends the arm, lying at the midpoint of the two epicondyles when it reaches the cubital fossa. It divides into its terminal branches near the neck of radius.


Terminal branches


Arterial Supply to

Muscular branches:

From its branches:


  • May descend medially, often behind a supracondylar process that gives a band around the artery, running through pronator teres to the medial epicondyle
  • May divide into two trunks which subsequently reunite
  • Often divides more proximally than usual. Either the radial (most commonly) or ulnar artery may arise proximally, leaving a common trunk which then divides into the other artery and common interosseous artery
  • Abnormal communicating arteries, the vasa aberrantia, may connect the artery to the axillary artery or radial artery.
  • May be crossed by tendons or muscle from coracobrachialis, biceps brachii, brachialis or pronator teres.
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