The distinctive course, coiled nature, and position of the small bowel are provided by the mesentery. The most characteristic gross anatomic feature of the jejunum and ileum is their organization into a series of bowel loops, compactly arranged in the midabdomen. In the routine interpretation of small intestinal series, little attention is directed to this unique organization of the bowel. Indeed, the confluence or overlapping of small bowel loops often presents a misleading appearance. Their serpentine, undulating course ordinarily poses a diagnostic challenge in identifying the presence of a localized abnormality.
However, the anatomic relationships inherent in this characteristic arrangement of the small intestine into loops of bowel may provide significant diagnostic information.1,2 Pathologically, many disease processes selectively involve the mesenteric or antimesenteric borders of the small intestine. An understanding of their anatomic definition and relationships permits radiologic identification of the specific borders.1
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This ebook provides an introductory explanation of the workings of the human body, with an effort to draw connections between the body systems and explain their interdependencies. A framework for the book is homeostasis and how the body maintains balance within each system. This is intended as a first introduction to physiology for a college-level course.