Bochdalek hernia

Rebecca Lindell

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Imaging description A Bochdalek hernia is a defect of the posterior hemidiaphragm with protrusion of abdominal content, usually fat, into the thorax [1]. It may occur on either side, but is more common on the left side due to a protective barrier effect of the liver [1, 2]. CT typically demonstrates the diaphragmatic defect with abdominal fat or omentum protruding through the defect [1–4] (Figure 71.1). Less commonly, retroperitoneal or intraperitoneal organs may herniate through the defect [3] (Figures 71.2 and 71.3). The kidney is the most common organ to herniate through the defect, followed by the spleen [3]. Importance Bochdalek hernias are present in approximately 6% of adults, with incidence increasing with age [2]. The vast majority of Bochdalek hernias occurring in adults are inconsequential [1, 2]. Rarely, incarceration of hernia content may occur [3]. Lack of familiarity with the typical imaging appearance of a Bochdalek hernia may lead to unnecessary work up as it may be mistaken for an indeterminate mass or diaphragmatic injury.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationPearls and Pitfalls in Thoracic Imaging
Subtitle of host publicationVariants and Other Difficult Diagnoses
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages2
ISBN (Electronic)9780511977701
ISBN (Print)9780521119078
StatePublished - Jan 1 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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