caudate lobe of liver
The caudate lobe is an independent part of the liver, supplied by the right and left hepatic artery and portal vein. It has venous drainage directly in to the vena cava. It is also known as the lobule of spiegel. The caudate section is connected to the right lobe by a narrow bridge called the caudate process. This lies behind the porta hepatis. Below this is a small round appendage called the papillary process. This occasionally completely covers the inferior vena cava bridging the caudate lobe to the right liver lobe. The caudate section of the liver is considered special by medical professionals because it has its own arterial supply and venous drainage. This is the reason it is seen as a separate lobe. In the early stages of liver damage, the liver may become enlarged. The right lobe of the liver shrinks more than the caudate section. The normal ratio between the caudate and right lobe is less than 0.6. This ratio is most sensitive in cases of cirrhosis.
Written and medically reviewed by the Healthline Editorial Team
In Depth: caudate lobe of liver