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General Anatomy > Parts of human body > Trunk > Abdominopelvic cavity > Peritoneum > Peritoneal attachments of liver

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Description

On following the peritoneum upward from this level it is seen to be reflected around a fibrous cord, the ligamentum teres (obliterated umbilical vein), which reaches from the umbilicus to the under surface of the liver.

This reflection forms a somewhat triangular fold, the falciform ligament of the liver, attaching the upper and anterior surfaces of the liver to the diaphragm and abdominal wall.

With the exception of the line of attachment of this ligament the peritoneum covers the whole of the under surface of the anterior part of the diaphragm, and is continued from it on to the upper surface of the right lobe of the liver as the superior layer of the coronary ligament, and on to the upper surface of the left lobe as the superior layer of the left triangular ligament of the liver.

Covering the upper and anterior surfaces of the liver, it is continued around its sharp margin on to the under surface, where it presents the following relations:

(a) It covers the under surface of the right lobe and is reflected from the back part of this on to the right suprarenal gland and upper extremity of the right kidney, forming in this situation the inferior layer of the coronary ligament; a special fold, the hepatorenal ligament, is frequently present between the inferior surface of the liver and the front of the kidney. From the kidney it is carried downward to the duodenum and right colic flexure and medialward in front of the inferior vena cava, where it is continuous with the posterior wall of the omental bursa. Between the two layers of the coronary ligament there is a large triangular surface of the liver devoid of peritoneal covering; this is named the bare area of the liver, and is attached to the diaphragm by areolar tissue. Toward the right margin of the liver the two layers of the coronary ligament gradually approach each other, and ultimately fuse to form a small triangular fold connecting the right lobe of the liver to the diaphragm, and named the right triangular ligament of the liver. The apex of the triangular bare area corresponds with the point of meeting of the two layers of the coronary ligament, its base with the fossa for the inferior vena cava.

(b) It covers the lower surface of the quadrate lobe, the under and lateral surfaces of the gall-bladder, and the under surface and posterior border of the left lobe; it is then reflected from the upper surface of the left lobe to the diaphragm as the inferior layer of the left triangular ligament, and from the porta of the liver and the fossa for the ductus venosus to the lesser curvature of the stomach and the first 2.5 cm. of the duodenum as the anterior layer of the hepatogastric and hepatoduodenal ligaments, which together constitute the lesser omentum. 

If this layer of the lesser omentum be followed to the right it will be found to turn around the hepatic artery, bile duct, and portal vein, and become continuous with the anterior wall of the omental bursa, forming a free folded edge of peritoneum. Traced downward, it covers the antero-superior surface of the stomach and the commencement of the duodenum, and is carried down into a large free fold, known as the gastrocolic ligament or greater omentum. 

Reaching the free margin of this fold, it is reflected upward to cover the under and posterior surfaces of the transverse colon, and thence to the posterior abdominal wall as the inferior layer of the transverse mesocolon. It reaches the abdominal wall at the head and anterior border of the pancreas, is then carried down over the lower part of the head and over the inferior surface of the pancreas on the superior mesenteric vessels, and thence to the small intestine as the anterior layer of the mesentery. It encircles the intestine, and subsequently may be traced, as the posterior layer of the mesentery, upward and backward to the abdominal wall. From this it sweeps down over the aorta into the pelvis, where it invests the sigmoid colon, its reduplication forming the sigmoid mesocolon. Leaving first the sides and then the front of the rectum, it is reflected on to the seminal vesicles and fundus of the urinary bladder and, after covering the upper surface of that viscus, is carried along the medial and lateral umbilical ligaments on to the back of the abdominal wall to the level from which a start was made.


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