Popliteal fossa (Redirected from Popliteal surface of the femur)

Popliteal fossa
Popliteal fossa of the right leg.
LatinFossa poplitea
Anatomical terminology

The popliteal fossa (also referred to as hough,[1] or kneepit in analogy to the cubital fossa) is a shallow depression located at the back of the knee joint. The bones of the popliteal fossa are the femur and the tibia. Like other flexion surfaces of large joints (groin, armpit, cubital fossa and essentially the anterior part of the neck), it is an area where blood vessels and nerves pass relatively superficially, and with an increased number of lymph nodes.



The boundaries of the fossa are:

  Medial Lateral
Superior the semimembranosus & semitendinosus muscles the biceps femoris muscle
Inferior the medial head of the gastrocnemius muscle the lateral head of the gastrocnemius muscle and plantaris muscle


Moving from superficial to deep structures, the roof is formed by:

  1. the skin.
  2. the superficial fascia. This contains the small saphenous vein, the terminal branch of the posterior cutaneous nerve of the thigh, posterior division of the medial cutaneous nerve, lateral sural cutaneous nerve, and medial sural cutaneous nerve.
  3. the popliteal fascia.


The floor is formed by:

  1. the popliteal surface of the femur.
  2. the capsule of the knee joint and the oblique popliteal ligament.
  3. strong fascia covering the popliteus muscle.


Structures within the popliteal fossa include, (from superficial to deep):

It is of note that the common fibular nerve also begins at the superior angle of the popliteal fossa.

Additional images

See also

This page was last updated at 2023-11-13 21:35 UTC. Update now. View original page.

All our content comes from Wikipedia and under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.


If mathematical, chemical, physical and other formulas are not displayed correctly on this page, please useFirefox or Safari