Thursday, March 12, 2009

25 - ulnar nerve anatomy part 1

INTRODUCTION:  In human anatomy, the ulnar nerve is a nerve which runs near the ulna bone. The ulnar nerve is the largest unprotected nerve in the human body (meaning, unprotected by muscle or bone), and the only unprotected nerve that does not serve a purely sensory function (those nerves specifically meant to perceive changes in the environment, such as nerves in the skin). This nerve is directly connected to the little finger, and the adjacent half of the ring finger, supplying the palmar side of these fingers, including both front and back of the tips, perhaps as far back as the fingernail beds.

Aggravation of this nerve is commonly referred to as hitting one's "funny bone." this name is thought to be a (conscious or subconscious)pun, based on the sound resemblance between words "humerus" and "humourous" .

COURSE IN ARM : The ulnar nerve comes from the medial cord of the brachial plexus, and runs inferior on the posterior and medial (posteromedial) aspects of the humerus down the arm, going behind the medial epicondyle, through the cubital tunnel, at the elbow (where it is exposed for a few centimeters, just above the joint). Because of the mild pain and tingling throughout the forearm associated with an inadvertent impact of the nerve at this point, it is usually called the funny bone. (it may also have to do with its location relative to the humerus, as the name "humerus" is a homophone to the word "humourous").

 COURSE IN FOREARM : It enters the anterior (flexor/front) compartment of the forearm through the two heads of flexor carpi ulnaris and runs alongside the ulna. There it supplies one and a half muscles (flexor carpi ulnaris & medial half of flexor digitorum profundus). It soon joins with the ulnar artery, and the two travel inferiorly together, deep to the flexor carpi ulnaris muscle.

 Here it gives off the following branches: 

 1. Muscular branches of ulnar nerve

2. Palmar branch of ulnar nerve

3. Dorsal branch of ulnar nerve

COURSE IN HAND :  After it travels down the ulna, the ulnar nerve enters the palm of the hand. Unlike the median nerve which travels below the flexor retinaculum of the hand and through the carpal tunnel, the ulnar nerve and artery pass superficial to the flexor retinaculum via the ulnar canal.

 Here it gives off the following branches: 

 1. Superficial branch of ulnar nerve

2. Deep branch of ulnar nerve

No comments:

Subscribe Now: Feed

Visitors currently online