Ductus venosus (DV) is a critical part of the fetal circulation. It is a narrow, trumpet-shaped vessel which is seen in the fetal liver. It connects the umbilical vein directly to the caudal inferior vena cava. The vessel plays a critical role in the fetal circulation by shunting oxygenated and nutrient-rich umbilical venous blood from the placenta to the brain and myocardium bypassing the fetal liver.
History and etymology
It was first described by anatomist Giulio Cesare Aranzio in the sixteenth century.