Pronator teres muscle

Pronator teres muscle

Anterior view of the left forearm. Superficial muscles. (Pronator teres colored at center.)
Origin humeral head: medial supracondylar ridge of humerus (common flexor tendon)
ulnar head: coronoid process of ulna
Insertion Middle of the lateral surface of the body of the radius
Artery ulnar artery and radial artery
Nerve median nerve
Actions pronation of forearm, flexes elbow
Antagonist Supinator muscle
Latin Musculus pronator teres
TA A04.6.02.025
FMA 38450

Anatomical terms of muscle

The pronator teres is a muscle of the human body (located mainly in the forearm) that, along with the Pronator quadratus, serves to pronate the forearm (turning it so that the palm faces posteriorly when from the anatomical position).


The pronator teres has two heads—humeral and ulnar.

The median nerve enters the forearm between the two heads of the muscle, and is separated from the ulnar artery by the ulnar head.

The muscle passes obliquely across the forearm, and ends in a flat tendon, which is inserted into a rough impression at the middle of the lateral surface of the body of the radius, just distal to the insertion of the supinator.

The lateral border of the muscle forms the medial boundary of the triangular hollow known as the cubital fossa, which is situated anterior to the elbow.


The pronator teres is innervated by the median nerve.

To stimulate the pronator teres, a signal begins in the precentral gyrus in the brain and goes down through the internal capsule. It continues down the corticospinal tracts through the capsule, midbrain, and pons where it arrives at the medullar pyramids. Once at the pyramids, the corticospinal tracts decussate and the signal goes down the lateral corticospinal tract until it reaches the ventral horns of C5, C6, C7, C8, and T1.[1] The signal then goes through the ventral rami and down the root ganglion of C5, C6, C7, C8, and T1 (Brachial Plexus). Next, the signal goes down the median nerve branch of the Brachial Plexus and stimulates the Pronator Teres to contract causing the hand to pronate.[2]


Occasionally, the ulnar head is absent. Also, additional slips from the medial intermuscular septum, from the biceps brachii, and from the brachialis occasionally occur.


Pronator teres pronates the forearm, turning the hand posteriorly. If the elbow is flexed to a right angle, then pronator teres will turn the hand so that the palm faces inferiorly. It is assisted in this action by pronator quadratus.

It also weakly flexes the elbow, or assists in flexion at the elbow when there is strong resistance.

Clinical significance

Pronator teres syndrome is one cause of wrist pain. It is a type of neurogenic pain.


The word pronator comes from the Latin pronus, which means “inclined forward or lying face downward”, and has to do with the muscle's action being pronation of the forearm. The Latin term teres, which means "round or cylindrical shaped" or "long and round", refers to the shape of the muscle.[3][4] The indirect English translation of pronator teres is therefore: cylindrical muscle that turns the forearm (the palm) down.

Additional images


This article incorporates text in the public domain from the 20th edition of Gray's Anatomy (1918)

External links

This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 9/15/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.