Skeletal Radiology

, Volume 38, Issue 2, pp 171–175 | Cite as

Triceps brachii tendon: anatomic-MR imaging study in cadavers with histologic correlation

  • Clarissa BelentaniEmail author
  • Daniel Pastore
  • Mani Wangwinyuvirat
  • Berna Dirim
  • Debra J. Trudell
  • Parviz Haghighi
  • Donald Resnick
Scientific Article



The purpose of this cadaveric study was to describe the normal MR anatomy of the triceps brachii tendon (TBT) insertion, to correlate the findings with those seen in anatomic sections and histopathologic analysis, and to review triceps tendon injuries.

Materials and methods

Twelve cadaveric elbows were used according to institution guidelines. T1-weighted spin-echo MR images were acquired in three planes. Findings on MR imaging were correlated with those derived from anatomic and histologic study.


On MR images, the TBT had a bipartite appearance as it inserted on olecranon in all specimens. The insertion of the medial head was deeper than that of the long and lateral heads and was mainly muscular at its insertion, with a small amount of the tendon blending with the muscle distally, necessitating histologic analysis to determine if there was tendon blending with the muscle at the site of insertion and if the medial head inserted together with the common tendon or as a single unit. At histopathologic analysis, the three heads of the triceps tendon had a common insertion on the olecranon. The bipartite aspect of the tendon that was identified in the MR images was not seen by histologic study, indicating that there was a union of the medial and common tendons just before they inserted into bone.


TBT has a bipartite appearance on MR images and inserts on olecranon as a single unit.


Triceps brachii tendon MRI Anatomy Injuries 


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Copyright information

© ISS 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Clarissa Belentani
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Daniel Pastore
    • 3
  • Mani Wangwinyuvirat
    • 3
  • Berna Dirim
    • 3
  • Debra J. Trudell
    • 3
  • Parviz Haghighi
    • 4
  • Donald Resnick
    • 3
  1. 1.StamfordUSA
  2. 2.Department of RadiologyUniversity of CaliforniaSan DiegoUSA
  3. 3.Department of Radiology, VA Medical CenterUniversity of CaliforniaSan DiegoUSA
  4. 4.Department of Histology, VA Medical CenterUniversity of CaliforniaSan DiegoUSA

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