Abdominal cavity

Last revised by Dr Jeremy Jones on 14 Sep 2021

The abdominal cavity is divided into two major compartments, the peritoneum and retroperitoneum, early in fetal development.

The parietal peritoneum is reflected over the peritoneal organs to form a series of supporting peritoneal ligaments, mesenteries and omenta. The peritoneal reflections carry vessels, nerves and lymphatics from the retroperitoneum to the peritoneal organs. They may act as a natural connection between the retroperitoneum and peritoneum (the subperitoneal space) which provides a pathway for the extension of intra-abdominal disease.

ADVERTISEMENT: Supporters see fewer/no ads

Cases and figures

  • Figure 1
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Figure 2
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Figure 3: retroperitoneum
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Updating… Please wait.

     Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

     Thank you for updating your details.