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Il Giornale Italiano di Radiologia Medica 2019 Settembre-Ottobre;6(5):500-18

DOI: 10.23736/S2283-8376.19.00210-9

Copyright © 2019 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English, Italian

Anatomy and pathology of the inguinal region: a practical guide to radiological interpretation

Alessandro CONTI 1, Andrea CONTI 1 , Francesco A. IANNACE 1, Carla DESIDERIO 1, Alfredo G. TORCITTO 1, Antonino ZANGHÌ 2, Antonio BASILE 1, Stefano PALMUCCI 1

1 Radiology Unit 1, G.F. Ingrassia Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences and Advanced Technologies, Vittorio Emanuele University Hospital, University of Catania, Catania, Italy; 2 Division of General Surgery and Senology, G.F. Ingrassia Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences and Advanced Technologies, Vittorio Emanuele University Hospital, University of Catania, Catania, Italy


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The inguinofemoral region represents a complex anatomic area in which pathologic processes frequently take place. The etiology of such pathologies can be quite variable, considering the amount of anatomical structures that constitute this region and their different embryologic origin. A differential diagnosis can often be difficult, due to non-specific clinical findings; pain and swelling are the most commonly described signs and symptoms. The radiologist plays a key role in the appropriate diagnostic process, which is guiding the clinician and the surgeon towards the correct diagnosis and thus to a proper and prompt treatment. Inguinofemoral region pathologies are numerous and heterogeneous, below will be described: hernias, congenital conditions, vascular abnormalities, inflammatory diseases, benign and malignant tumors. In a large number of cases, the detection of masses that affect the structures forming the inguinofemoral region represents an incidental finding during cross-sectional imaging for other indications. The aim of this work is to illustrate and highlight, through a series of cases taken from our archive, the imaging characteristics of the normal anatomy of the inguinofemoral region and the peculiar features of the pathological conditions affecting this anatomic area, using the most accurate diagnostic tool between ultrasound (US), computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance (MR).


KEY WORDS: Groin; Inguinal hernia; Infection; Neoplasm metastasis; Diagnosis

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