Short note on the formation, course and branches of the axillary artery

Introduction: the axillary artery is the continuation of the third part of the subclavian artery. It begins at the lateral border of the first rib.
Course: it enters the axilla by passing over the first digitations of the serratus anterior at the lateral border of the first rib posterior to the midpoint of the clavicle. It is invested by fascia, the axillary sheath, and continues at the inferior border of the teres  major by becoming the brachial artery.
Relations: the lateral cord of the brachial plexus lies lateral to the 2nd part of the axillary Artery, the medial cord is medial and the posterior cord is posterior to it. The axillary vein lied medial to the artery.
Divisions: the axillary artery is divided into 3 parts by the pectoralis minor muscle.
1st part: lies superior to the muscle.
2nd part: lies posterior to the muscle.
3rd part: lies inferior to the muscle.
Surface marking: when the arm is by the side the axillary artery is represented by a curved line from the middle of the clavicle running below the coracoid process to the groove posterior to the coracobrachialis.
Branches: the axillary has six branches;
1st part:  – superior thoracic artery
2nd part: – thoracacromial artery
                 – lateral thoracic artery
3rd part: – subscapular artery
                 – anterior circumflex humeral artery
                 -  posterior circumflex humeral artery
Clinical correlates: aneurysm of the axillary artery compresses the nerves of the brachial plexus. This causes pain and then anaesthesia of the areas of the upper limb supplied by the nerve concerned

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