Solid and hollow abdominal viscera

Last revised by Daniel J Bell on 30 Aug 2023

The solid abdominal viscera (singular: viscus) is a collective term for those internal organs of the upper abdomen that are primarily solid in nature, namely the liver, pancreas, spleen, adrenals, and kidneys. It is used in contradistinction to the hollow abdominal viscera, which includes, the stomach, small bowel, large bowel, rectum, gallbladder, and bladder. If gas-filled viscera are referred to then only the stomach, small and large bowel, and rectum are included.

Neither term is usually felt to include the internal reproductive organs e.g. uterus, adnexa, prostate etc., nor does it include the nodal, musculoskeletal or neurovascular structures.

Most commonly it is a term found in imaging reports e.g. "Unremarkable appearance of the solid abdominal viscera" or "The presence of free peritoneal gas likely indicates perforation of a gas-filled viscus".

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