The rectouterine pouch (also known as the rectovaginal pouch, cul-de-sac or pouch of Douglas) is an extension of peritoneum between the posterior wall of uterus and the rectum in females. It is the most dependent part of the peritoneal cavity and is analogous to the rectovesical pouch in males.
- anteriorly - uterus, posterior fornex of the vagina
- posteriorly - rectum
- inferiorly - peritoneal rectovaginal fold
Being a most dependent and lower area of the peritoneal cavity of females in supine position the pathology (e.g. abscess, infection, ascites, hemoperitoneum) preferentially collects here.
The pouch is useful in end-stage renal failure patients, where it is a prefered place for peritoneal dialysis
It is named after the Scottish anatomist Dr James Douglas (1675–1742).