2-11. THE LEG
a. General. Anatomically, the word leg is reserved for that portion of the lower
extremity (limb) between the knee and the ankle. The leg (figure 2-12) has two bones,
the tibia and the fibula).
b. The Tibia. The tibia, or shinbone, is situated in the medial portion of the leg.
It is a long bone consisting of a shaft and two extremities.
(1) The superior extremity is expanded into the medial and lateral condyles.
Between the condyles is a projection called the intercondylar eminence. Inferior to the
condyles on the anterior aspect of the upper tibia is a roughened prominence called the
tibial tuberosity. The fibular facet is situated on the posteroinferior aspect of the lateral
condyle. The shaft, or body, is somewhat triangular in shape and presents three
borders and three surfaces. The anterior border, the most prominent one, is sharp and
is called the anterior margin. The interosseous margin, or lateral border, is directed
toward the interosseous margin of the fibula and gives attachment to the interosseous
membrane connecting the tibia and fibula.
(2) Situated on the distal extremity is a process called the medial malleolus,
which forms the prominence on the medial side of the ankle. The fibular notch is a
small depression on the lateral border of the distal end of the tibia. The inferior articular
surface of the tibia is quadrilateral in shape.
c. The Fibula. The fibula, or calf bone, is situated on the lateral side of the leg.
It is a long, slender bone consisting of a shaft and two extremities. The proximal
extremity is somewhat rounded and is called the head. The fibular styloid process, or
apex, projects from the superior surface of the head. The distal end, called the lateral
malleolus, forms the prominence on the lateral side of the ankle. A common fracture
occurring in the leg is called Pott's fracture. This is a fracture of the distal fibula with
frequent involvement of the medial malleolus of the tibia.
2-12. THE THIGH
a. The Femur. The femur (figure 2-13) is the longest and strongest bone in the
body and extends from the hip joint to the knee joint. The femur consists of a shaft and
two extremities, superior and inferior.
(1) The superior (proximal) extremity bears a rounded prominence, the
head. The head is attached to the shaft by the neck. At the junction of the neck and the
shaft of the femur is a roughened prominence called the greater trochanter, which can
be felt through the skin. The greater trochanter is the palpation point for the hip joint.
Inferior to the greater trochanter and situated on the posterior and medial aspect of the
bone is an eminence named the lesser trochanter.