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Extensor Muscle

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What is an Extensor Muscle?

Extensor muscle is defined as any of the muscles that increase the angle between the members of a limb, as by straightening either knee, elbow, or bending the spine or wrist backwards. Usually, the movement is directed backwards, with the notable knee joint exception.

Extensor Muscle in Humans

This function is named after certain muscles in the foot and hand in humans. In the human hand, these include the extensor carpi radialis longus, extensor carpi ulnaris, and extensor carpi radialis brevis that run from the humerus (upper arm bone) along the back of the forearm to the metacarpal bones at the back of the hand and that extend the wrist; the extensor digitorum that runs from the humerus to a common tendon attached to all of the fingers and that extends the extensor indicis; the fingers; that acts upon the index finger; and extensor pollicis longus, and the extensor pollicis brevis that run from the ulna (bones of the forearm) and radius, respectively, and act upon the thumb.

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Extensor Muscle in the Foot

Extensors in the foot are the extensor digitorum brevis and the extensor digitorum longus that originate at both the upper and lower parts of the lower leg and act via long tendons upon the extensor hallucis brevis, extensor hallucis longus, and the toes that act upon the great toe. Also, the foot’s long muscles aid the flexion of the ankle and the foot upward.

Extensor Digitorum Longus Muscle

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Origin and Insertion

Extensor digitorum longus muscle arises from the tibia’s lateral condyle; from the upper three-quarters of the anterior body surface of the fibula; from the deep surface of the fascia; from the upper part of the interosseous membrane; and from the intermuscular septa between it and the tibialis anterior on the peroneal and medial muscles on the lateral side. Between it and the tibialis anterior are given as the anterior tibial vessels and deep peroneal nerve’s upper portions.

This muscle passes under the inferior and superior extensor retinaculum of the foot in company with the fibularis tertius and divides into four slips that run forward on the foot’s dorsum and are inserted into the second, third phalanges of four-lesser toes.

The tendons to all the second, third, and fourth toes are each joined, opposite to the metatarsophalangeal articulations, on the lateral side of the tendon of the extensor digitorum Brevis. These tendons are inserted in the manner as explained: each receives a fibrous expansion from the lumbricals and interossei, and then spreads out into the broad aponeurosis that covers the first phalanx’s dorsal surface: at the articulation of the first with the second phalanx, this aponeurosis divides into three slips- an intermediate that is inserted into the second phalanx’s base; and two collateral slips, that after uniting on the second phalanx’s dorsal surface, are continued onward, to be inserted into the third phalanx’s base.

Extensor Hallucis Longus Muscle


The extensor hallucis longus muscle is the one that arises from the fibula’s anterior surface for up to the middle two-fourths of its extent, medial to the extensor digitorum longus muscle origin. Also, it arises from the interosseous membrane of the leg to the same extent.

Behind it and the tibialis anterior are the deep fibular nerve and the anterior tibial vessels.

Nerve Supply

The deep fibular nerve supplies the extensor hallucis longus muscle, which is a branch of the popular fibular nerve that includes the L4, L5, and S1 spinal nerve roots.

Hip Extensor Muscles

The muscles of the hip joint in human anatomy are those muscles, which cause the hip movement. Most modern anatomists describe 17 of these muscles, although a few additional muscles may be considered sometimes. The lateral rotator group, the gluteal group, the iliopsoas group, and the adductor group are commonly divided into four groups based on their orientation around the hip joint.

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Extensor Digitorum

The extensor digitorum muscle (which is also called extensor digitorum communis) is a muscle of the posterior forearm that is present in both humans and other animals. It extends the hand’s medial four digits. This extensor digitorum is innervated by the posterior interosseous nerve that is a radial nerve’s branch.

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Function of Extensor Digitorum

The extensor digitorum extends the phalanges, followed by the wrist and the elbow. The way it stretches the fingers often helps to divide them.

The extensor digitorum in the fingers acts principally on the proximal phalanges by acting to extend the metacarpophalangeal joint. The palmar and dorsal lumbrical and interossei of the hand, on the other hand, are primarily responsible for extending the distal and proximal interphalangeal joints.

Extensor Carpi Ulnaris Muscle

In the human anatomy, the extensor carpi ulnaris is defined as a skeletal muscle that is located on the ulnar side of the forearm. It acts to adduct and extend at the wrist or carpus from the anatomical position.

Extensor carpi ulnaris, being an extensor muscle, are on the posterior side of the forearm.

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FAQs on Extensor Muscle

1. Give the Injuries of Extensor Carpi Ulnaris Muscle?

Answer: A common injury which is to the extensor carpi ulnaris, is given as tennis elbow. This injury takes place in people, which participate in activities requiring repetitive arm, wrist, and elbow, especially when they are gripping an object tightly. A few symptoms include pain when shaking hands or when gripping or squeezing an object. When a person moves their wrist with force, the pain worsens a lot.

2. Give the Function of Extensor Carpi Radialis Brevis?

Answer: It is an abductor and an extensor of the hand at the wrist joint. It means it serves to manipulate the wrist, so the fingers move away from the palm. Like all extensors of the forearm, the muscle can be strengthened by exercise, which resists its extension; Reverse wrist curls with the dumbbells may be performed.

3. Give the Function of Extensor Digitorum Brevis?

Answer: Extensor digitorum brevis is the one that extends the first four digits at the metatarsophalangeal joint and also assists in extending all the second, third and fourth digits at the interphalangeal joint. The fifth digit, lacking any insertion from the extensor digitorum brevis, may only be raised by the long extensor.

4. Explain About Extensor Pollicis Brevis Muscle?

Answer: The ulna distal to the abductor pollicis longus, the interosseous membrane, and the dorsal surface of the radius all contribute to the extensor pollicis brevis muscle.

Its tendon follows the same path as the abductor pollicis longus, passing through a similar groove on the lateral side of the radius' lower end before being inserted into the base of the first phalanx thumb.

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