Prominent papillary process of the caudate lobe

Case contributed by Dr Francis Fortin


Fall from standing height. Rib fractures and pneumothorax.

Patient Data

Age: 75 years
Gender: Male

There is a tubular, round-edged structure arising from the caudate of the liver and extending medially adjacent to the posterior surface of the stomach and superior surface of the pancreatic body. It is homogeneous and continuous with the liver, suggesting a prominent papillary process of the caudate lobe.

Also noted are subcutaneous emphysema and multiple calcified gallstones.

Annotated image

Annotated axial image highlights in purple the elongated papillary process of the caudate lobe.

Case Discussion

There is a prominent papillary process of the caudate lobe. The importance of this finding is in not confusing it with a hepatic or pancreatic neoplasm, or a retroperitoneal lymph node. The homogenous appearance, the isodensity to the liver, as well as the smooth edges of transition with the lateral caudate lobe are the keys to making this distinction. In addition, the absence of a dysmorphic liver parenchyma make an exophytic tumor very unlikely.

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Case information

rID: 61695
Published: 14th Jul 2018
Last edited: 14th Aug 2019
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included