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Published online: 2023-08-04

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The evaluation of vasculature in post-mortem angio-computed tomography for anatomy research purposes: method description based on celiac trunk analysis

Jakub Batko1, Radosław Chmiel1, Aleksiej Juszczak1, Jerzy Walocha1, Artur Moskała2, Michał Bonczar1, Artur Pasternak1, Krzysztof Woźniak2


Background: Anatomical research based on deceased body specimens is a time-consuming process that requires a great deal of skill and time to perform correctly. Three-dimensional medical image analysis is an excellent tool for anatomic evaluation, but it often includes patients with comorbidities in the study group, which can skew the results. The purpose of this study was to develop and evaluate methods for anatomic research based on postmortem contrast-enhanced computed tomography angiography 3D reconstruction of the celiac trunk.

Materials and methods: Postmortem contrast-enhanced computed tomography angiography of 105 (28.6% female, age 50.8±18.7) decedents without abdominal trauma or tumor was analyzed. The abdominal portion of the aorta and the celiac trunk with its branches were reconstructed and evaluated. The type of celiac trunk was evaluated. The results were analyzed.

Results: The celiac trunk, splenic artery, and common hepatic artery were visualized in all cases. The left gastric artery was visible in 97.1% of cases. The dorsal pancreatic artery was visualized in 61.0% of cases. The most common type of celiac trunk was 1 (88.6%), and the rarest types were 2, 3, and 6 (1.0%). We observed 4 morphologies of the truncus celiacus that did not fit the classification presented previously.

Conclusions: This study has demonstrated that three-dimensional reconstruction of postmortem contrast-enhanced computed tomography is an excellent tool for performing accurate morphometric analyzes for anatomic research purposes. This method can serve as a source for anatomic studies in the healthy population.

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