Calot triangle is a small (potential) triangular space at the porta hepatis of surgical importance as it is dissected during cholecystectomy. Its contents, the cystic artery and cystic duct must be identified before ligation and division to avoid damaging them during the operation.
The (isosceles) triangle is positioned so that the apex points towards the liver with the boundaries:
- right: the cystic duct which is often tortuous and has a beaded appearance, passes downward and to the left to join the common duct
- left: common hepatic duct
- superior: the inferior surface of the liver (in the original description by Calot the cystic artery is defined as the superior margin)
- right hepatic artery
- cystic artery
- cystic lymph node (of Lund)
- connective tissue
- occasionally accessory hepatic ducts and arteries
History and etymology
This space was first described by the French surgeon, Jean-François Calot (1861–1944) 3 in 1891, as part of his PhD thesis; although the space as described by Calot differs slightly from the modern description 4.
- 1. Nagral S. Anatomy relevant to cholecystectomy. J Minim Access Surg. 2005;1 (2): 53-8. doi:10.4103/0972-9941.16527 - Free text at pubmed - Pubmed citation
- 2. Reorganized text. JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1967;141 (13): 428. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03120260082023 - Pubmed citation
- 3. Haubrich WS. Calot of the triangle of Calot. (2002) Gastroenterology. 123 (5): 1440. Pubmed
- 4. Abdalla S, Pierre S, Ellis H. Calot's triangle. (2013) Clinical anatomy (New York, N.Y.). 26 (4): 493-501. doi:10.1002/ca.22170 - Pubmed