Spigelian hernia: CT findings and clinical relevance

Abdom Imaging. 2013 Apr;38(2):260-4. doi: 10.1007/s00261-012-9889-z.


Objective: The purpose of our study was to evaluate the clinical relevance of preoperative CT in distinguishing between the two subtypes of spigelian hernia (SH).

Materials and methods: We reviewed retrospectively the CT images of 35 patients. The patients were divided into two groups on the basis of the SH subtype: interstitial SH group (n = 15) and subcutaneous SH group (n = 20). Clinical characteristics of patients and CT findings were analyzed. Bowel ischemia on surgery was also noted.

Results: Sixteen right hernias and 19 left hernias were observed. Fifteen interstitial SH (43%) and 20 subcutaneous SH (57%) were found. No type of content showed a statistically significant association with one or other subtype of SH. Nine of the 26 patients presenting with SH with SB content showed signs of SBO on CT. Closed-loop SBO on CT was present in 5 of the 26 patients with SB content. An interstitial SH was observed in all of these 5 patients (p = 0.039). Surgery was performed on 10 patients. Bowel ischemia was found on surgery in 4 patients and showed no statistically significant association with a particular subtype of SH (p = 0.6).

Conclusion: Our study shows the importance of performing CT in SH. CT provides the diagnosis of SH, shows SH content, and demonstrates the presence of SBO or closed-loop SBO. Moreover, the distinction between the two subtypes of SH on CT appears to be of clinical relevance since closed-loop SBO is statistically associated with interstitial SH and the optimal surgical approach may differ.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Female
  • Hernia, Abdominal / diagnostic imaging*
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed