The ascending colon, when compared to the cecum, is smaller in caliber. The cecum, also spelled as caecum, connects to the ileum along with the large intestine's ascending colon, and is shaped like a pouch. Coming from the cecum, the ascending colon moves in an upward direction and underneath the right side of the liver before passing the opposite side of the colic valve. The colic valve is also referred to as the ileocecal valve and is considered a sphincter muscle that is positioned where the large intestine and the small intestine meet. After passing the underside of the liver, the ascending colon then travels by the right side of the gallbladder and lodges into the colic impression, which is a shallow impression on the liver. After lodging into the colic impression, the ascending colon forms the right colic flexure by abruptly bending to the left in a forward direction. The right colic flexure, also called the hepatic flexure, is located directly next to the liver, between the transverse and ascending colon.
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In Depth: Ascending colon