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Deep Popliteal Nodes (Left)
Lymphoid System

Deep Popliteal Nodes (Left)

Nodi poplitei profundi

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Quick Facts

Location: Popliteal fossa.

Drainage: Muscles, joints, fascia, and periosteum of the knee region and leg.

Direction of Flow: Deep inguinal lymph nodes > common iliac lymph nodes > lateral aortic lymph nodes (left) and lateral caval lymph nodes (right) > left and right lumbar lymph trunk > cisterna chyli > thoracic duct.

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The deep popliteal lymph nodes are located deep within the popliteal fossa, medial to, or on both sides of the popliteal artery. They are deep collectors of leg and knee region.

They receive drainage from the posterolateral lymph vessels and the superficial popliteal lymph nodes. Efferent vessels of the deep inguinal lymph nodes drain into external iliac or deep inguinal nodes.

On an X-ray, the deep popliteal lymph nodes may be mistaken for a fabella, a small sesamoid bone in the lateral head of the gastrocnemius muscle (Földi et al., 2012).


Földi, M., Földi, E., Strößenreuther, R. and Kubik, S. (2012) Földi's Textbook of Lymphology: for Physicians and Lymphedema Therapists. Elsevier Health Sciences.

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