The posterior tibial artery runs down the leg, just below the knee. It branches off the popliteal artery, and it transits oxygenated blood to the leg's posterior compartment and the plantar region of the foot. During the course of the blood vessel, it splits into several branches. This includes the fibular, medial plantar and lateral plantar arteries. Also, the artery runs in close proximity to the tibial nerve. The nerve serves many of the same regions as the artery.
While the artery delivers oxygenated blood, the poster tibial vein drains deoxygenated blood and moves it back to the heart and lungs.
The posterior tibial artery is palpable in certain locations. A pulse can easily be detected at the leg's Pimenta point, which is located near the medial malleus and the Achilles tendon's insertion point. Often, doctors access a patient's pulse through Pimenta's point. By doing this, they can make an assessment regarding both arterial health and the patient's risks for peripheral vascular disease. This condition involves vascular obstruction unrelated to the heart or the brain.