Surgical and Radiologic Anatomy

, Volume 15, Issue 4, pp 349–353 | Cite as

Sonographic anatomy of the rectus sheath: an indication for new terminology and implications for rectus flaps

Radiological Anatomy


With the aim of standardizing descriptions of lesions on the anterior abdominal wall and definition of reconstructive flaps, the sonographic anatomy of the rectus sheath has been studied in 8 subjects. Anatomic terms have been suggested for the various segments and intersections of the sheath. The linea abla, linea semilunaris, formation of rectus sheath, segments and intersections have been described and illustrated. Identical segments and intersections were found to have characteristic sonographic features in all subjects. The intersection below the umbilicus was observed in 1 out of 8. Ultrasound capability in the determination of size and extent of tissues is discussed. It is hoped that the use of the suggested terminology and the preoperative ultrasonic definition of rectus flaps, may provide basis for objective comparison of results of reconstructive surgery.

Key words

Ultrasonography Rectus abdominis muscle Rectus sheath Reconstructive surgery Breast 

Anatomie échographique de la gaine du muscle droit de l'abdomen : indication d'une nouvelle terminologie et implications pour les lambeaux du muscle droit


Dans le but de standardiser la description des lésions de la paroi antérieure de l'abdomen et la définition des lambeaux de reconstruction, l'anatomie de la gaine du muscle droit de l'abdomen a été étudiée chez huit sujets. Des termes anatomiques ont été proposés pour les différents segments et les intersections de la gaine. La ligne blanche, la ligne semilunaire, la formation de la gaine du droit, les segments et les intersections ont été décrits et illustrés. Chez tous les sujets, segments et intersections équivalents se sont révélés avoir des aspects échographiques caractéristiques. L'intersection sous l'ombilic a été observé dans un cas sur huit. Les possibilités échographiques dans la définition de la taille et de l'extension des tissues sont discutées. Il est souhaité que l'utilisation de la terminologie proposée et la définition échographique préopératoire des lambeaux du droit puissent être à la base d'une évaluation objective des résultats de la chirurgie reconstructrice.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • QM Ali
    • 1
  1. 1.College of MedicineSultan Qaboos UniversityAl-Khod, 123 MuscatSultanate of Oman

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