Chest X-ray showing obvious Chilaiditi's sign, or presence of gas in the right colic angle between the liver and right hemidiaphragm.
|Classification and external resources|
Chilaiditi syndrome is a rare condition when pain occurs due to transposition of a loop of large intestine (usually transverse colon) in between the diaphragm and the liver, visible on plain abdominal X-ray or chest X-ray.
Normally this causes no symptoms, and this is called Chilaiditi's sign. The sign can be permanently present, or sporadically. This anatomical variant is sometimes mistaken for the more serious condition of having air under the diaphragm (pneumoperitoneum) which is usually an indication of bowel perforation, possibly leading to surgical interventions.
The exact cause is not always known, but it may occur in patients with a long and mobile colon (dolichocolon), chronic lung disease such as emphysema, or liver problems such as cirrhosis and ascites. Chilaiditi's sign is generally not associated with symptoms, and is most commonly an incidental finding in normal individuals.
Absence or laxity of the ligament suspending the transverse colon or of the falciform ligament are also thought to contribute to the condition. It can also be associated with relative atrophy of the medial segment of the left lobe of the liver. In this case, the gallbladder position is often anomalous as well – it is often located anterior to the liver, rather than posterior.
Synonyms include interpositio hepatodiaphragmatica, subphrenic displacement of the colon, subphrenic interposition syndrome and pseudopneumoperitoneum.
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- synd/2326 at Who Named It?