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Internal hernia

Dr Andrew Dixon and Radswiki et al.

Internal hernias are protrusions of the viscera through the peritoneum or mesentery but remaining within the abdominal cavity.

Types of internal hernias include:

Clinical presentation

Most common presentation is an acute obstruction of small bowel loops that develops through normal or abnormal apertures.


Responsible hernial orifices are usually preexisting anatomic structures, such as foramina, recesses, and fossae.

Pathologic defects of the mesentery and visceral peritoneum, which are caused by congenital mechanisms, surgery, trauma, inflammation, and circulation, are also potential herniation orifices.

Radiographic features


Encapsulation of distended bowel loops with an abnormal location, arrangement or crowding of small-bowel loops within the hernial sac, evidence of obstruction with segmental dilatation and stasis.

Mesenteric vessel abnormalities, with engorgement, crowding, twisting, and stretching of these vessels

See also

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