Definition of popliteal in English:


Pronunciation /pɒˈplɪtɪəl//ˌpɒplɪˈtiːəl/


  • Relating to or situated in the hollow at the back of the knee.

    • ‘Posteriorly, the head rises to a pointed apex that affords attachment for the arcuate popliteal ligament and, on the lateral side, part of the biceps tendon.’
    • ‘Angiographic findings include severe distal, segmental occlusive lesions, but the more proximal arteries (below the popliteal and distal to brachial branches) are normal.’
    • ‘The obturator nerve, by its posterior division, sends a branch through the adductor magnus muscle onto the popliteal artery that enters the knee joint posteriorly.’
    • ‘Commonly used sites for catheterization include the basilic, cephalic, saphenous popliteal, external jugular, and temporal veins.’
    • ‘The patient's legs were placed on pillows to bend her knees slightly to prevent peroneal and popliteal nerve damage.’
    • ‘Large blood vessels pass through the popliteal space behind the knee.’
    • ‘Thus, reflux at the saphenofemoral junction, saphenopopliteal junction, and within the deep venous system, including the popliteal vein beneath the knee and the gastrocnemius veins, can be detected without invasive techniques.’


Early 18th century: from modern Latin popliteus (from Latin poples, poplit- ‘ham, hough’) + -al.