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Flexor Digitorum Brevis
Muscular System

Flexor Digitorum Brevis

Flexor brevis digitorum

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Quick Facts

Origin: Medial process of calcaneal tuberosity and plantar aponeurosis.

Insertion: Plantar aspects of bodies of middle phalanges of the second, third, fourth and little toes.

Action: Flexes second, third, fourth, and little toes.

Innervation: Medial plantar nerve (S1-S3).

Arterial Supply: Medial and lateral plantar, plantar metatarsal, and proper plantar digital arteries.

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Origin

The flexor digitorum brevis muscle originates from the:

- medial process of the calcaneal tuberosity;

- plantar aponeurosis;

- adjacent intermuscular septa.

Insertion

The fibers of the flexor digitorum brevis muscle travel anteriorly and insert, via four separate tendons, onto the plantar aspects of the bodies of the middle phalanges of the second, third, fourth, and little toes.

Key Features & Anatomical Relations

The flexor digitorum brevis muscle is located in the first layer of muscles that are found in the plantar part of the foot. It is a short, broad, fusiform type of skeletal muscle that divides into four tendons. Within the plantar part of the foot, each tendon travels superficial to the tendons of the flexor digitorum longus muscle. The tendons of both muscles travel through the fibrous sheaths that are found along the plantar aspects of the second, third, fourth and little toes. Along each proximal phalanx, the tendons of the flexor digitorum longus pass through the tendons of the flexor digitorum brevis, and then travel to their insertion sites.

The flexor digitorum brevis muscle is located:

- superficial (inferior) to the quadratus plantae muscle, the tendons of the flexor digitorum longus muscle, the lateral plantar vessels, and the lateral plantar nerve;

- deep (superior) to the plantar aponeurosis;

- medial to the abductor digiti minimi muscle of foot;

- lateral to the abductor hallucis muscle.

Actions

The flexor digitorum brevis muscle is involved in multiple actions:

- flexes the middle phalanges at the proximal interphalangeal joints of the second, third, fourth and little toes;

- flexes the proximal phalanges at the metatarsophalangeal joints of the same toes (Sinnatamby, 2011).

References

Sinnatamby, C. S. (2011) Last's Anatomy: Regional and Applied. ClinicalKey 2012: Churchill Livingstone/Elsevier.

Actions

The flexor digitorum brevis muscle is involved in multiple actions:

- flexes the middle phalanges at the proximal interphalangeal joints of the second, third, fourth and little toes;

- flexes the proximal phalanges at the metatarsophalangeal joints of the same toes (Sinnatamby, 2011).

Learn more about this topic from other Elsevier products

Flexor Digitorum Brevis Muscle

ScienceDirect image

(Bottom) The flexor digitorum brevis muscle divides into slips to toes 2-4, and sometimes 5, at the level of the metatarsal shafts.

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