Update: We are now collecting Disclosures from all users who edit content. You will be prompted to update these when you next edit content or you can complete your disclosures at any time in your user profile. This has been reflected in an updated terms-of-use.

Mercedes-Benz sign (gallbladder)

Last revised by Patrick O'Shea on 03 Aug 2022

In the gallbladder, the Mercedes-Benz sign describes a star-shaped pattern of gas-fissuring within gallstones initially described on an abdominal radiograph 2.

Fissures, usually fluid-filled, are present in close to 50% of gallstones. Less than half of these fissured gallstones contain some amount of nitrogen gas 1. The radiolucency caused by the gas usually appears in a triradiate pattern, reminiscent of the Mercedes-Benz logo.


The terms crow's foot and star‐shaped were previously used to describe fissured gallstones. However, they were replaced by the Mercedes-Benz sign 4

History and etymology

Friedrich August Walter first described stellate fissuring of gallstones in vitro in 1796. In 1931, Béla Breuer described their appearance on an abdominal radiograph 4.


ADVERTISEMENT: Supporters see fewer/no ads

Cases and figures

  • Figure 1: Mercedes Benz badge
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 1
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 3
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 4
    Drag here to reorder.
  •  Case 5
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Case 6
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Updating… Please wait.

     Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

     Thank you for updating your details.