Arterial anatomy of the gracilis muscle as determined by latex injection and glycerin transparency

Xiaochun An, Bin Yue, Je Hun Lee, Chenghe Lin, Seung Ho Han

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


The gracilis muscle is widely used in reconstructive surgery, either as a pedicled flap or as a free microsurgical flap. The aim of this study was to demonstrate in detail the arterial anatomy of the gracilis muscle, particularly its intramuscular artery distribution, by using a method involving red latex injection and glycerin transparency, which makes muscle tissues quite transparent and allows direct visualization of the arterial anatomy. Twenty-four specimens of gracilis muscle were harvested after injecting 12 cadavers with red latex. The different patterns of blood supply of the gracilis muscle were counted. A complete arterial system formed by anastomoses of intramuscular arterial branches was observed in each specimen. The existence of several arterial branches at the proximal origin of each muscle was observed. The results of this study provide reconstructive surgeons with useful information regarding gracilis muscle flap design.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)231-234
Number of pages4
JournalClinical Anatomy
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2012


  • arterial anatomy
  • glycerin transparency
  • gracilis muscle
  • latex injection


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