The lumbricals are a set of intrinsic muscles of the foot that are located within the second plantar muscle layer. They attach to the tendons of the flexor digitorum longus, which then attaches to the extensor hoods of the lateral four digits. These lumbricals are responsible for flexion of the metatarsophalangeal joints and extension of the interphalangeal joints.
They are innervated by the medial plantar nerve for the medial lumbrical and the lateral plantar nerve for the lateral three lumbricals. Blood supply for them comes from the lateral plantar artery and the plantar metatarsal arteries.
The lumbricals provide stability and support for the foot and have an important role in foot function. They are key to proper gait and are essential in the plantarflexion and dorsiflexion of the toes as they allow and control the flexion, extension, and inversion of the foot. Since the lumbricals are so important in foot function, any injury to them may cause significant impairment to the foot.
Knowing the anatomy of the lumbricals is important for treating and respecting these muscles, as it will enable you to understand why certain injuries may occur and how to prevent them. Additionally, since the lumbricals are connected to the tendons of the flexor digitorum longus, they can act in unison to provide joint stability for the foot.
The most common causes of injuries to the lumbricals are overuse and trauma. Overuse injuries happen when the muscles are overworked and trauma injuries typically occur when the muscle has been stretched beyond its range of motion. Knowing the anatomy of the lumbricals allows you to be aware of what activities could lead to an injury and take precautions to prevent them.
In order to treat an injury to the lumbricals, it's important to understand its anatomy, attachments, actions, innervation, and blood supply. Rest and physical therapy are the main treatments for these muscles. Physical therapy is especially important as it will help to strengthen the muscles and increase their range of motion. Knowing the anatomy of these muscles can also help to recognize when you're at risk for an injury and take steps to prevent it.
When engaging in activities that involve intense or sustained levels of activity, it's important to know the anatomy of the lumbricals in order to prevent injury. Proper warm up and cool down exercises can also reduce the risk of injury. Additionally, wearing shoes that are well-cushioned can help to reduce the strain on the lumbricals and prevent injury.
Overall, the lumbricals are essential to foot function and stability and proper acknowledgement of their anatomy and function is necessary in order to prevent injury. Knowing this anatomy can also help to provide an understanding of how the lumbricals operate in unison with the tendons of the flexor digitorum longus and provide joint stability for the foot.
Join Shiken For FREEJoin For FREE