Topographic relationships among the gallbladder, liver, hepatic flexure of the colon, right hemidiaphragm, and anterolateral peritoneal reflection were evaluated with computed tomography in 75 patients with biopsy-proved cirrhosis and in 200 control subjects to determine the effect of cirrhotic liver morphology on the anatomy of the right upper quadrant of the abdomen. Interposition of the colon between the liver and anterolateral abdominal wall and/or diaphragm was seen in 18 of the 75 (24%) cirrhotic patients and in six of the 200 (3%) control subjects. There was a strong correlation among gallbladder malposition, colonic interposition, and a ratio of transverse caudate lobe width to right lobe width (C/RL) exceeding 0.60. Patients with cirrhosis, colonic interposition, and gallbladder malposition had a mean C/RL of 0.62, compared with a mean of 0.50 for cirrhotic patients without interposition (P < .0001). The mean C/RL for control subjects without interposition was 0.43, as compared with 0.69 for control subjects with interposition (P < .01). These acquired malpositions of the colon and gallbladder may pose a diagnostic dilemma and increase the risk of inadvertent injury during percutaneous liver biopsy, interventional biliary tract procedures, and laparotomy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging