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Joshi SD, Joshi SS, Athavale SA
Correspondence: Dr Subhash D Joshi, firstname.lastname@example.org
Introduction A sound knowledge of the normal and variant liver anatomy is a prerequisite to having a favourable surgical outcome. Knowledge of the commonly-occurring variations assumes even more significance in the era of diagnostic imaging and minimally-invasive surgical approaches. Although the segmental anatomy of the liver has been extensively researched, very few studies have dealt with the surface variations of the liver.
Methods 90 formalin-fixed livers were utilised for the study. Variations regarding the shapes of the caudate and the quadrate lobes as well as the normal fissures were observed. The presence of the accessory fissures and any other variations on the surface of the livers were noted.
Results Varied shapes of the caudate and the quadrate lobes were encountered. Notching along the inferior border of the caudate lobe was seen in 18 percent of livers, a vertical fissure was observed in 30 percent, and prominent papillary process was seen in 32 percent. Accessory fissures and grooves were more common in the right lobe. Multiple prominent vertical grooves were observed on the anterosuperior surface of the liver in six percent of livers. Quadrate lobe was absent in four percent, and in two cases, it was found to be deeply buried. Presence of a pons hepatis, bridging the left and the quadrate lobes, was observed in 30 percent of the livers examined.
Conclusion Our study is expected to serve as a guide for proper interpretations of liver images using various imaging modalities. It will also be useful to the operating surgeons to be aware of the frequently-occurring morphological variations on the liver surface.
Keywords: accessory fissures, caudate lobe, liver anatomy, papillary process, pons hepatis, quadrate lobe
Singapore Med J 2009; 50(7): 715-719