Arcuate line (anterior abdominal wall)

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For other arcuate lines, see arcuate line.
Arcuate line (anterior abdominal wall)
The interfoveolar ligament, seen from in front. (Linea semicircularis labeled at center top.)
Latin linea arcuata vaginae musculi recti abdominis
Gray's subject #118 416
Dorlands/Elsevier l_10/12496056

The arcuate line of the abdomen (or linea semicircularis) is a horizontal line that demarcates the lower limit of the rectus sheath. It is also where the inferior epigastric vessels perforates the rectus abdominus.

Superior to the arcuate line, the internal oblique aponeurosis splits to envelope the rectus abdominis muscle. Inferior to the arcuate line, the internal oblique and transversus abdominis aponeuroses merge and pass superficial to the rectus muscle.

The arcuate line occurs about 1/3 of the distance from the umbilicus to the pubic crest, but this varies from person to person. Above the arcuate line, the rectus abdominis is surrounded by an anterior layer of the rectus sheath and a posterior layer. The anterior layer is derived from the external oblique aponeurosis and the anterior laminina of the internal oblique aponeurosis. The posterior layer is made up of the posterior lamina of the internal oblique aponeurosis and the tranverse abdominal aponeurosis. After the arcuate line, all three muscles' aponeuroses make up only the anterior of the rectus abdominis and not the posterior, like before the arcuate line.

Therefore, inferior to the arcuate line, the rectus abdominis rests directly on the transversalis fascia.

If one dissects the anterolateral abdominal wall, the arcuate line may be seen, since all the aponeuroses are translucent.

External links

  • SUNY Labs 35:13-0101 - "Anterior Abdominal Wall: The Posterior Wall of the Rectus Sheath"
  • SUNY Anatomy Image 7113
  • SUNY Anatomy Image 7573
  • 1751842873 at GPnotebook
  • Norman/Georgetown rectussheath
  • Rizk N (1991). "The arcuate line of the rectus sheath--does it exist?". J Anat. 175: 1–6. PMID 1828798.
  • Atlas of anatomy at UMich abdo_wall61 - "Anterior Abdominal Wall, Lower Part, Posterior View"