The purpose of this study was to document the extent of the arteries supplying the external and internal oblique muscles and the connections among the vascular territories. Ten adult human cadavers underwent whole-body arterial perfusion (200 ml/kg) with a mixture of lead oxide, gelatin, and water, through the carotid artery. The external and internal oblique muscles were dissected and subjected to radiography. The vasculature of each muscle was analyzed by using the paper template technique. The areas of the vascular territories of the individual intercostal arteries within the external oblique muscle varied from 9 to 22 percent. The area of the vascular territory of the muscular branch of the deep circumflex iliac artery was 5 to 18 percent. The ascending branch of the deep circumflex iliac artery supplied a mean of 35.7 percent of the vascular territory of the internal oblique muscle. The lower six posterior intercostal arteries supplied a mean of 48.5 percent. The lateral branches of the deep inferior epigastric artery supplied a mean of 15.8 percent. This information provides the basis for the design of external and internal oblique muscle flaps for functional muscle transfer.
Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada; and Harbin, China
From the Departments of Anatomy and Neurobiology and Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, Dalhousie University, and the Department of Surgery, Second Hospital of Harbin Medical University.
Received for publication October 16, 2002;
revised January 9, 2003.
Daping Yang, M.D.
Division of Plastic Surgery
Second Hospital of Harbin Medical University
Harbin, HLJ, China 150086