Veins of the Forelimb - Anatomy & Physiology

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Essentially the lay out of the veins is similar in all domestic species.

The venous drainage in animals can be roughly divided into deep and superficial veins.

The deep veins are just satellite vessels to the arteries that have been previously described.

The main superficial vein is the Cephalic vein, this appears on the palmar aspect of the metacarpus, passing over the medial side to reach the cranial radius. It is superficial from here to the elbow and so is very suitable for venipuncture. The accessory cephalic vein joins it at along the length of the radius. A connection, the median cubital vein exists between the the cephalic and the deep brachial vein. The cephalic remains on the craniomedial aspect of the limb and after passing the shoulder joint it heads towards the midline and then drains into the jugular vein.


The dog has an extra vessel called the axillobrachial vein that leaves the cephalic at the elbow, it runs through the biceps muscle and connects to the brachial vein.


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