Pancreaticoduodenectomy is the usual surgical option for curative treatment of periampullary cancer and carries a significant mortality. Arterial anomalies of the celiac axis are not uncommon and might lead to iatrogenic lesions or requiring arterial resection/reconstruction in a pancreatoduodenectomy.
Determine the prevalence of arterial variations having implications in pancreatoduodenectomy.
Celiac trunk and hepatic arterial system anatomy was retrospectively evaluated in 200 abdominal enhanced computed tomography studies.
Normal anatomy of hepatic arterial system was found in 87% of cases. An anomalous right hepatic artery was identified in 13% of cases. In 12 cases there was a substitute right hepatic artery arising from superior mesenteric artery and in two cases an accessory right hepatic artery with similar origin. A hepatomesenteric trunk was identified in seven cases and in five there was a right hepatic artery directly from the celiac trunk. All cases of anomalous right hepatic artery had a route was behind the pancreatic head and then, posteriorly and laterally, to the main portal vein before reaching the liver.
Hepatic artery variations, such as anomalous right hepatic artery crossing posterior to the portal vein, are frequently seen (13%). These patients, when undergoing pancreatoduodenectomy, may require a change in the surgical approach to achieve an adequate resection. Preoperative imaging can clearly identify such variations and help to achieve a safer pancreatic head dissection with proper surgical planning.
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