Profunda femoris artery

The profunda femoris artery (also known as the deep femoral artery or deep artery of the thigh) is a branch of the common femoral artery and is responsible for providing oxygenated blood to the deep structures of the thigh, including the femora.

Posterolateral aspect of the common femoral artery at the upper part of the femoral triangle, 2-5 cm below the inguinal ligament

At first lateral to the femoral artery, it then runs behind it and the femoral vein to the medial side of the femur, and passes downward behind adductor longus, ending in a small terminal branch that pierces adductor magnus.

At the lower third of thigh in terminal fourth perforating branch.

  • absence
  • duplication 5
  • additional branches 
  • variable site/side of origin of the medial and lateral femoral circumflex 
  • medial and lateral femoral circumflex originating from the femoral artery
  • may arise or run anterior, lateral or medial to the femoral artery 
  • variable distance below the inguinal ligament of origin 

Mnemonic for the deep branches of the thigh:

Anatomy: Lower limb
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Article information

rID: 24866
System: Vascular
Section: Anatomy
Tag: artery
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Deep femoral arteries
  • Profunda femoris artery (PFA)
  • Profunda femoris arteries
  • Deep femoral artery
  • Deep artery of the thigh

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Cases and figures

  • Figure 1: femoral triangle (diagram)
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  • Case 1: variant origin
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