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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


Incidental Anatomic Finding of Celiacomesenteric Trunk Associated with ‘Nutcracker Phenomenon,’ or Compression of the Left Renal Vein

Congenital defects / diseases

Joshua Peterson, Anthony N. Hage, Stephan Diljak, Benjamin D. Long, Daniel P. Marcusa, John M. Stribley, David W. Brzezinski, Jonathan Eliason

USA University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, MI, USA

Am J Case Rep 2017; 18:1334-1342

DOI: 10.12659/AJCR.906283

Available online: 2017-12-15

Published: 2017-12-15


BACKGROUND: Celiacomesenteric trunk (CMT) is a very rare anatomic finding in which the celiac artery and the superior mesenteric artery (SMA) originate from the abdominal aorta through a common trunk. Clinical associations with CMT include arterial aneurysm, thrombosis, and celiac artery compression. However, an association between CMT and abdominal venous congestion caused by left renal vein compression, or ‘nutcracker phenomenon,’ has not been previously reported.
CASE REPORT: A 91-year-old woman, who died from a cerebrovascular accident (CVA), underwent a cadaveric examination at our medical school. On examination of the abdomen, there was an incidental finding of CMT. The arterial and venous diameters were measured, and vascular histopathology was undertaken. The vascular anatomy was consistent with CMT type 1-b. Nutcracker phenomenon (NCP) (left renal vein compression) was seen anatomically as dilatation and engorgement of the left renal vein, relative to the right renal vein (10.77±0.13 mm vs. 4.49±0.56 mm, respectively), and dilatation and engorgement of the left ovarian vein, relative to the right ovarian vein (4.37±0.15 mm vs. 1.06±0.09 mm, respectively) with left ovarian varicocele. The aortoceliac angle (ACA) and the aortomesenteric angle (AMA) approached zero degrees.
CONCLUSIONS: We have described a rare anatomic finding of CMT that created an acute AMA and NCP. Awareness of this rare association between CMT and NCP by clinicians, vascular surgeons, and radiologists may be of value in the future evaluation and surgical management of patients who present clinically with ‘nutcracker syndrome.’

Keywords: Celiac Artery, Mesenteric Artery, Superior, Renal Nutcracker Syndrome, Renal Veins