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Abductor pollicis brevis muscle

The abductor pollicis brevis muscle is a thin subcutaneous muscle located laterally in the thenar eminence of the hand, and is one of the intrinsic muscles of the hand.


  • origin: mainly from the flexor retinaculum
  • insertion: its medial fibers are attached by a thin, flat tendon to the radial side of the proximal phalangeal base in the pollex and lateral fibers join the pollicial dorsal digital expansion
  • innervation: lateral branch of median nerve (C8 and T1)
  • action: abducts the thumb and medially rotates it at the carpometacarpal and metacarpophalangeal joints
Anatomy: Upper limb

Anatomy: Upper limb

Article information

rID: 42960
Section: Anatomy
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Abductor pollicis brevis muscles

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Cases and figures

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