Pattern of Superficial Venous Arrangement in The Cubital Fossa of Adult Jordanians

Faraj AlBustami, Islam Altarawneh, Eman Rababah


Objective: The cubital fossa is a common site for the withdrawal of venous blood for analysis, fluid and blood transfusion, and intravenous therapy. The superficial venous return from the upper limb follows a number of superficial veins which are extremely variable; these include the cephalic, basilic, median cubital and antebrachial veins and their tributaries.
To determine the patterns of superficial venous arrangement in the cubital fossa of adult Jordanians.

Methods: 264 males and females were randomly selected from the students of the University of Jordan. All subjects were Jordanian, aged between 18 and 25 years. The students consent was taken, the superficial veins of the cubital fossa were made prominent by applying a tourniquet about 10 cm proximal to the crease of the elbow and by active movements of the hand. The veins were marked on the skin and the pattern of veins in each case was accurately diagrammed on a sheet of paper.

Results: Six venous patterns were observed. There were no significant differences between the venous patterns on the right and left sides in males or females. The commonest pattern was that the median cubital vein arose from the cephalic vein a few centimeters below the elbow, joined the basilic vein a few centimeters above the level of the elbow joint and received tributaries from the front of the forearm. This pattern was more common in males (51.5%) than in females (45.4%). The less commonly observed patterns was the absence of communication between basilic and cephalic veins (in 13.6% males and 12.8%females); an arched median cubital vein (in 9.8% males and 12.8 %females); absence of the cephalic vein (in 5.3%males and 13.6% females) and two median cubital veins (in 2 males only, 1.5%).

Conclusions: Awareness of these cubital venous patterns and their approximate incidence would be very useful for those performing venepuncture or venesection in Jordanians, especially under emergency conditions.


Cubital fossa, Superficial veins, Patterns, Jordanians.

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