Biliary Tract in Trident, an Anatomical Variation Between the Cystic Duct and its Union to the Common Hepatic Duct. A Rare Case Report

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Oscar Plaza & Freddy Moreno


Given that the gallbladder and the biliary tract are subject to multiple anatomical variants, detailed knowledge of embryology and its anatomical variants is essential for the recognition of the surgical field when the gallbladder is removed laparoscopically or by laparotomy, even when radiology procedures are performed. During a necropsy procedure, when performing the dissection of the bile duct is a rare anatomical variant of the bile duct, in this case the cystic duct joins at the confluence of the right and left hepatic ducts giving an appearance of trident. This rare anatomical variant in the formation of common bile duct is found during the exploration of the bile duct during a necropsy procedure, it is clear that the wrong ligation of a common hepatic duct can cause a great morbi-mortality in the post- surgical of biliary surgery. This rare anatomical variant not previously described is put in consideration to the scientific community. Anatomical variants of the biliary tract are associated with high rates of morbidity and mortality, causing serious bile duct injuries. Only the surgical skill of the surgeon and his open mind to the possibilities of abnormalities make the performance of cholecystectomy a safe procedure.

KEY WORDS: Anatomical variants; Liver; Gallbladder; Extrahepatic bile duct; Hepatic duct; Cholecystectomy.

How to cite this article

PLAZA, O. & MORENO, F. Biliary tract in trident, an anatomical variation between the cystic duct and its union to the common hepatic duct. A rare case report. Int. J. Morphol. 37(1):308-310, 2019.