Updated: 4/20/2017

Retroperitoneal Structures

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Overview
retroperitoneal structures
  • Labeled structures
    1. duodenum (2nd, 3rd, 4th parts)
    2. descending colon
    3. ascending colon
    4. kidneys
      • left kidney sits at spinal cord level T12-L3, right kidney slightly inferior
      • renal arteries take off aorta at L1
    5. pancreas (minus tail)
    6. aorta
    7. inferior vena cava (IVC)
      • formed at L4-L5 where common iliac veins come together 
  • Not shown in diagram
    • suprarenal glands aka adrenal glands
    • ureters
    • esophagus (lower 2/3)
    • rectum (upper 2/3)
  • "SAD PUCKER" mnemonic of retroperitoneal structures
    • Suprarenal glands (aka adrenal glands)
    • Aorta and IVC
    • Duodenum
    • Pancreas
    • Ureters
    • Colon (descending, ascending)
    • Kidneys
    • Esophagus
    • Rectum
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Questions (2)

(M1.GI.17.4752) A 45-year-old male is brought to the emergency department by emergency medical services after sustaining a gunshot wound to the abdomen. He is unresponsive. His temperature is 99.0°F (37.2°C), blood pressure is 95/58 mmHg, pulse is 115/min, and respirations are 20/min. Physical examination reveals an entry wound in the left abdominal quadrant just inferior to the left lateral costal border. Abdominal CT suggests that the bullet is lodged in a retroperitoneal structure. Which of the following structures has the bullet most likely penetrated? Tested Concept

QID: 108731
1

Descending colon

71%

(102/143)

2

Transverse colon

17%

(24/143)

3

Ascending colon

1%

(2/143)

4

Superior duodenum

3%

(5/143)

5

Sigmoid colon

6%

(9/143)

M 1 B

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