The Coeliac Axis and The “Snowman”

The coeliac axis is seen high in the epigastrium. The division into splenic artery and hepatic artery is said to resemble the wings of a  seagull, with each division appearing as a wing.

Often bowel gas obscures the coeliac axis, and this view may be difficult to obtain.

Lower down is the superior mesenteric artery (SMA), which has a characteristic appearance. When seen in the transverse section, it is important that the ‘snowman’ be recognised.