Profunda brachii

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The artery profunda brachii (arteria profunda brachii) is a branch of the brachial artery.

Profunda brachii
Arteries of the elbow.gif
Arteries around the elbow including the profunda brachii and its branches (confusingly the radial collateral branch is labelled as the anterior branch here and the medial collateral as radial collateral)
System: Arterial
Origin: Brachial artery
Branches: Nutrient, deltoid, middle collateral, radial collateral
Arterial supply: Humerus, anconeus, deltoid, triceps, brachioradialis, brachialis
Venous drainage:
Lymphatic drainage:
Vertebral levels:
Search for Profunda brachii in Gray's.


Anatomical Course

The artery arises from the posteromedial side of the brachial artery soon after passing distally to teres major. It passes posteriorly between the long and medial heads of triceps, lying close to the radial nerve. It lies in the posterior groove of the humerus, alongside the radial nerve and deep to triceps. It divides into its terminal branches within the groove.


The profunda brachii has four branches, excepting its muscular branches.

Nutrient branch

A nutrient artery to the humerus enters the bone posterior to the deltoid tuberosity.

Deltoid branch

The deltoid branch (ascending branch) ascends between the lateral and long heads of triceps to anastamose with the posterior circumflex humeral artery.

Terminal branches

Middle collateral branch

The middle collateral branch (posterior descending branch) arises below the humerus and descends with the medial head of triceps to the elbow, where it anastamoses with the interosseous recurrent artery. It supplies a small branch to anconeus.

Radial collateral branch

A continuation of the artery, it accompanies the radial nerve through the intermuscular septum to run down between brachioradialis and brachialis to anastamose with the radial recurrent artery anterior to the lateral epicondyle.


Deltoid branch:

Middle collateral branch:

Radial collateral branch:


Arterial Supply to


  • The nutrient branch may be absent
  • The branch to anconeus may be absent

See Also

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