Surgical and Radiologic Anatomy

, Volume 41, Issue 4, pp 365–372 | Cite as

Redefining the morphometry of subclavian vessels for clavicle fracture treatments

  • Alper VatanseverEmail author
  • Deniz Demiryürek
  • Burcu Erçakmak
  • Hakan Özsoy
  • Tuncay Hazirolan
  • Yunus Emre Şentürk
Original Article



Clavicle fractures are common injuries in adults and children. Although neurovascular damage is rarely seen, acute subclavian artery pseudoaneurysms and injuries to subclavian vessels were reported for closed fractures of the clavicle. The aim of this study was to identify the morphological details of the subclavian vessels and their relation to the sternoclavicular joint and body of the clavicle.


127 patients (66 females and 61 males) were evaluated using reconstructed three-dimensional computed tomographic angiographies. The point at which the subclavian artery crossed posterior to the clavicle was detected as a landmark. The medio-lateral distance between the sternal end of the clavicle, landmark, antero-posterior distance between the clavicle and the subclavian artery, diameter of the artery and vein, angle between the subclavian artery and vein, distance of the subclavian vein to the subclavian artery and the clavicle at the landmark were measured. Measurements were compared according to gender and right and left sides, and age correlation was determined.


Morphometric relationship between the subclavian vessels and clavicle presented differences between genders. We measured the antero-posterior distance between the subclavian artery and the clavicle to be less than 1 cm (0.91 cm).


The subclavian artery travelled longer distances in men than women to reach the point that it crossed the clavicle. Our results demonstrated that the subclavian artery does not pass from the inferior margin of the clavicle, thus, superior plate osteosynthesis does not have any risk to injury against the subclavian vessels during the management of the clavicle fractures.


Subclavian vessels Clavicle Computed tomography 3D reconstruction 


Author contributions

DD; study development and design, manuscript preparation. BE; study development and design, manuscript preparation. TH; data collection and management, data analysis, manuscript preparation. HÖ; study development and design, data analysis, manuscript preparation. YEŞ; data collection and management, data analysis, manuscript preparation. AV; study development and design, data collection and management, data analysis, statistical analysis, manuscript preparation.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag France SAS, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Anatomy, Faculty of MedicineBalikesir UniversityBalikesirTurkey
  2. 2.Department of Anatomy, Faculty of MedicineHacettepe UniversityAnkaraTurkey
  3. 3.Department of Orthopaedic and TraumatologyMemorial HospitalAnkaraTurkey
  4. 4.Department of Radiology, Faculty of MedicineHacettepe UniversityAnkaraTurkey

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