Location of the Transverse Colon in Relationship to the Umbilicus: Implications for Laparoscopic Techniques

Academic Article


  • Study Objective. To establish the location of the transverse colon in relationship to the umbilicus, and determine if it varies as a function of patient height or weight. Design. Retrospective review of computed tomograms (CT) of the abdomen (Canadian Task Force classification 11-2). Setting. University hospital. Patients. Sixty-seven women with normal abdominal anatomy. Intervention. Review of abdominal CT scans. Measurements and Main Results. The relative relationships of the transverse colon and umbilicus were compared with age, height, weight, and body mass index (BMI = kg/m2) using multiple regression analysis. Average location of the superior margin of the transverse colon was 4.6 cm (95% CI 3.5-5.7 cm) above the umbilicus. In nine (13%) women it was below the umbilicus. The colon was below the umbilicus in 25% of nonobese women (BMI < 25 kg/m2). Conclusion. Because the transverse colon lies below the umbilicus in more than 10% of women, injury to it may be an uncommon yet unavoidable complication of laparoscopy.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Chee SS; Godfrey CD; Hurteau JA; Schilder JM; Rothenberg JM; Hurd WW
  • Start Page

  • 385
  • End Page

  • 388
  • Volume

  • 5
  • Issue

  • 4