Authors: R Gerli ( ) , L Ibba ( ) , C Fruschelli ( )
In contrast to their absence near dermal blood capillaries, elastic fibers are commonly seen adjacent to dermal lymphatic capillaries under light microscopy. Based on morphometric analysis, the elastic fiber network that surrounds these skin lymphatic capillaries is predominantly oriented longitudinally to the lymphatic vessel wall. Quantitative analysis reveals that the density of these pericapillary elastic fibers are almost twice that of the intercapillary elastic fibers but only about one-half as thick. These data suggest that dermal lymph capillaries are surrounded by a specific elastic network of functional significance, morphologically distinct from that seen in the intercapillary dermis. Because lymphatic capillaries are often difficult to identify especially when collapsed, this elastic network may facilitate the positive identification of dermal lymphatic capillaries by light microscopy and thereby help differentiate them from blood capillaries. The possible role of this lymphatic elastic network in the absorptive activity of the dermal lymphatic system is also discussed.
How to Cite: Gerli, R. , Ibba, L. & Fruschelli, C. (1989) “MORPHOMETRIC ANALYSIS OF ELASTIC FIBERS IN HUMAN SKIN LYMPHATIC CAPILLARIES”, Lymphology. 22(4).