Canadian Anaesthetists’ Society Journal

, Volume 22, Issue 1, pp 91–99 | Cite as

Direct arterial pressure monitoring from the dorsalis pedis artery

  • W. E. Spoerel
  • P. Deimling
  • R. Aitken


The arteria dorsalis pedis, when clearly palpable, is a suitable artery for direct arterial blood pressure monitoring. The systolic pressure and the pulse pressure are likely higher in the dorsalis pedis artery when compared to the radial artery but there is no clinically significant difference in mean pressures. In plethysmographic studies it was found that in 16 per cent of the patients examined the pulse in the second toe disappeared after occlusion of the dorsalis pedis artery indicating that it carried the main blood supply to the toes. Although no complications have resulted from cannulation of the dorsalis pedis artery in our practise, some caution is in order and preliminary testing may be advisable even if the posterior tibial artery is distinctly palpable.


Radial Artery Collateral Circulation CANADIAN Anaesthetist Popliteal Artery Posterior Tibial Artery 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


La pédieuse lorsqu’elle est facilement perçue est une bonne voie d’accès à la lecture directe de la pression artérielle. Les chiffres obtenus peuvent être légèrement plus élevés que ceux obtenus dans une artère radiale, mais il n’existe pas de différence suffisante de la pression moyenne pour que cela ait une importance clinique. Lors d’études pléthysmographiques, on a trouvé que les pulsations du second orteil disparaissaient après occlusion de la pédieuse chez 16 pour cent des patients, l’irrigation des orteils étant surtout redevable à cette artère. Bien que n’ayant pas eu de complication chez nos malades avec cette méthode, il semble indiqué de vérifier au préalable la présence d’un pouls tibial postérieur perceptible.


  1. 1.
    Conrad, Margaret C. Functional anatomy of the circulation to the lower extremities. Year Book Medical Publications Inc. Chicago (1971).Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Cunningham, D.J. Textbook of anatomy. 11th ed. University Press, London (1972).Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Gray, H. Anatomy of the human body. 29th ed. Lea & Febiger, Philadelphia (1973).Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Huber, J.F. The arterial network supplying the dorsum of the foot. Anat. Ree.80: 373 (1941).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Barnhorst, B.A. &Barner, H.B. Prevalence of congenitally absent pedal pulses. N.E.J.M.278: 264–265(1968).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Johnstone, R.E. &Greenhow, D.E. Catheterization of the dorsalis pedis artery. Anes-thesiology39: 654(1973).Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Keen, J.A. A study of the arterial variations in the limbs, with special reference to symmetry of vascular patterns. Amer. J. Anat.108: 245 (1961).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Canadian Anesthesiologists 1975

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. E. Spoerel
    • 1
  • P. Deimling
    • 1
  • R. Aitken
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of AnaesthesiaUniversity of Western Ontario and University HospitalLondonCanada

Personalised recommendations