Author: Alexandra Sieroslawska MD•Reviewer: Dimitrios Mytilinaios MD, PhDLast reviewed: September 30, 2021Reading time: 8 minutes


The regions that the abdomen are theoretical divisions used through clinicians to help localize, identify and diagnose a patients symptoms. There space two main develops of categorization, the an initial which is simpler and also is mapped the end by dividing the abdomen right into four quadrants, when the second technique divides it into nine segments.

You are watching: The epigastric region is superior to the umbilical region.

Either that these two ideas around the abdominal muscle regions are around the world recognized and also can be offered on a day-to-day basis throughout clinical practice. It is simply up to the medical professional on how they great to current their findings.

This article will discuss both schemes and include a list of the interior organs and also other important anatomical structures that have the right to be found within every region.

Key facts
Four region schemePrinciple: vertical line v linea alba (median plane) crosses horizontal line with the umbilicus (transumbilical plane) -> four quadrants: appropriate upper quadrant (RUQ), right lower quadrant (RLQ), left top quadrant (LUQ), left reduced quadrant (LLQ)Quadrants:RUQ - LUQ | |RLQ - LLQ
Nine an ar schemePrinciple: 2 vertical midclavicular present (left and right) cross two horizontal: subcostal (through lower edge that 10th costal cartilage) and transtubercular (through tubercles that iliac crests) -> nine segments: right and left hypochondrium, epigastrium, right and left lumbar regions, umbilical region, right and left inguinal regions, hypogastriumSegments:right hipochondrium - epigastrium - left hipochondriumright lumbar - umbilical - left lumbarright inguinal - hypogastrium - left inguinal
Clinical relationsGrey-Turner"s sign, Cullen"s sign

The four region scheme The nine an ar scheme
+ present all

The four an ar scheme

Divisions and also landmarks

The 4 anatomical areas of the abdomen are known as quadrants. They space separated through theoretical anatomical present that can be traced ~ above the abdomen using details anatomical landmarks. The median plane is that which adheres to the linea alba and also extends indigenous the xiphoid process to the pubic symphysis and also splits the abdomen vertically in half. The transumbilical plane is a horizontal line the runs in ~ the level that the umbilicus. These 2 planes transect in ~ the umbilicus in a cross-like kind and divide the abdomen into 4 quarters.


appropriate upper quadrant

The right upper quadrant (RUQ), in a craniocaudal order, contains:

the hepatic flexure that the colon the right half of the transverse colon

Right reduced quadrant

The right lower quadrant (RLQ) contains:

the proximal ascending colon

Left upper quadrant

The left top quadrant (LUQ), in a craniocaudal order, contains: 

the left lobe of the liver the stomach the proximal ileum the body and also the tail the the kidneys the left kidney and also the left suprarenal gland the left half of the transverse colon the splenic flexure the the colon the superior component of the descending colon

Left reduced quadrant

The left lower quadrant (LLQ) contains:

the distal diminish colon the sigmoid colon the left ureter

relying on the sex the the individual, both the left and right lower quadrants save either:

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The nine region scheme

Divisions and also landmarks

compared to the four region scheme, this department of the abdomen might seem an ext complicated. However, the can aid to more localize clinical symptoms and arrive at precise diagnosis an ext quickly. There room two vertical planes and two horizontal planes the are provided to separate the ripe segments. The vertical planes are well-known as the left and also right midclavicular lines. They run from the midpoint in the clavicle caudally in the direction of the midpoint of the inguinal ligament.


The horizontal planes which room mentioned here in a craniocaudal order, include the subcostal plane and the transtubercular plane. The subcostal plane operation horizontally with the reduced border the the tenth costal cartilage on either side. Finally, the transtubercular plane passes through the tubercles the the iliac crest and the human body of the fifth lumbar vertebra.

The right and left hypochondriac regions are found superiorly top top either side of the abdomen, when the epigastric region sits between them in a central, premium position. The right and also left lumbar regions surround the umbilical region, which is main and has actually the umbilicus as its centre point. Lastly, the right and also left inguinal regions are discovered inferiorly top top either next of the hypogastric region, i beg your pardon is the many inferior the the central line the segments.

each of the nine areas shall currently be detailed individually, to run craniocaudally from left come right:

Left hypochondriac region

The left hypochondriac region contains the:

stomach optimal of the left lobe the the liver left kidney spleen tail the the pancreas parts of the small intestine transverse colon to decrease colon

find out everything around the ab regions v our videos, quizzes, labeled diagrams, and articles:

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appropriate hypochondriac region

The appropriate hypochondriac region contains the:

liver gallbladder little intestine ascending colon transverse colon ideal kidney

Epigastric region

The epigastric region contains the:

stomach liver spleen pancreas right and also left kidneys right and left ureters right and also left suprarenal glands little intestine transverse colon

The place of the transverse colon deserve to differ slightly from human being to human due its cell phone suspension within the transverse mesocolon. That is, however, usually located between the epigastric and also umbilical areas of the abdomen. 

Left lumbar region

The left lumbar an ar contains:

a portion of the little intestine a part of the descending colon the pointer of the left kidney

appropriate lumbar region

The appropriate lumbar region contains the: 

reminder of the liver gallbladder ascending colon right kidney

Umbilical region

The umbilical an ar contains the:

stomach pancreas small intestine transverse colon medial four times of right and also left kidneys right and left ureters cisterna chyli

Left inguinal region

The left inguinal region contains:

part of the tiny intestine the to decrease colon the sigmoid colon the left ovary and the left fallopian pipe in females.

right inguinal region

The right inguinal an ar contains the:

tiny intestine appendix cecum ascending colon appropriate ovary and right fallopian tube in females

Hypogastric region

The hypogastric region contains:

little intestine sigmoid colon rectum urinary bladder right and left ureters uterus, the right and also left ovaries and the fallopian tubes deserve to be uncovered in females

Now that you learned everything about the regions of the abdomen, solidify your knowledge with our quiz:

Clinical aspects

Grey-Turner’s sign is a redness or bruising that deserve to be watched on the right lumbar region after a duration of 24 come 48 hours, indicating a retroperitoneal hemorrhage. Its visibility is far-reaching because it can be predictive of significant hemorrhagic pancreatitis, abdominal muscle injury or even metastatic cancer. Cullen’s sign is a discoloration of the skin about the umbilicus and points come a peritoneal hemorrhage.



Neil S. Norton, Ph.D. And Frank H. Netter, MD, Netter’s Head and also Neck Anatomy for Dentistry, 2nd Edition, Elsevier Saunders, thing 22 introduction to the top Limb, Back, Thorax and Abdomen, Overview and Topographic Anatomy, general Information, web page 556.Frank H. Netter, MD, Atlas of human Anatomy, 5th Edition, Saunders - Elsevier, thing Abdomen, Subchapter 24 Topographic Anatomy, Guide: ab Regions, page 126 to 127.


Duodenum (ventral view) - Begoña RodriguezCecum (ventral view) - Begoña RodriguezLeft kidney - ventral see - Irina MünstermannSigmoid colon (ventral view) - Begoña RodriguezMidclavicular heat (ventral view) - Irina MünstermannHypochondriac an ar (ventral view) - Irina MünstermannEpigastric an ar (ventral view) - Irina MünstermannLumbar an ar (ventral view) - Irina MünstermannUmbilical an ar (ventral view) - Irina MünstermannInguinal region (ventral view) - Irina Münstermann

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