Internal Medicine and Medical Investigation Journal

ISSN: 2474-7750

ComputedTomographicEvaluationoftheAngleandDistancebetweentheSuperior MesentericArteryandtheAbdominalAorta:NormalValuesinIranianPopulation AcrossDifferentBodyMassIndexCategories


Author(s): Saleh Jafarpisheh, Maryam Nasri, Hosein Ahrar


The present study aimed to prove that the angle and distance between the

superior mesenteric artery (SMA) and the aorta are significantly correlated

with the body mass index (BMI) in order to establish a strong etiological

role of the BMI in the development of SMA syndrome. SMA syndrome is

characterized by the compression of the third segment of the duodenum by

the mesentery at the SMA level, resulting in duodenal compression, oc


casionally accompanied by gastric compression. The syndrome is closely

associated with the depletion of the fat pad between the vessels, which re


duces the angle and distance between the vessels. This prospective study in


cluded 300 patients [163 males and 137 females; mean age, 51 (range, 40–

70) years] who underwent multislice detector computed tomography (CT)

scan in Alzahra Hospital in 2017 for various complaints other than SMA

syndrome. CT scans were performed by the standard protocol including a

plain phase scan, followed by arterial and venous phase scans, to measure

the SMA–aorta angle. The patients were categories as per their BMI into

four categories defined by WHO. The mean values for the distance and an


gle were calculated, with P values of 5% (95% confidence intervals) indicat


ing significant difference. Pearson coefficients between the parameters and

BMI were also determined, and the t-test was performed for comparisons. A

strong positive correlation was observed between BMI and the SMA–aorta

angle, indicating that the angle increases with increasing BMI, which reduc


es the risk of developing SMA syndrome

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