Home | About Us | Current Issue | Ahead of print | Archives | Search | Instructions | Subscription | Feedback | Editorial Board | e-Alerts | Login 
Journal of Indian Association of Pediatric Surgeons
     Journal of Indian Association of Pediatric Surgeons
Official journal of the Indian Association of Pediatric Surgeons         
 Users Online:681 
  Print this page Email this page   Small font sizeDefault font sizeIncrease font size

Table of Contents   
Year : 2012  |  Volume : 17  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 71-72

Duodenal atresia in association with situs inversus abdominus

Department of Surgery, Pediatric Surgery Unit, Kasturba Medical College, Manipal University, Mangalore, Karnataka, India

Date of Web Publication17-Mar-2012

Correspondence Address:
Raghu Shankar
Pediatric Surgery Unit, Department of Surgery, K.M.C, Attavar, Mangalore - 575 001, Karnataka
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0971-9261.93967

Rights and Permissions



We report a rare association of duodenal atresia with situs inversus abdominus in a newborn. The infantogram revealed "reverse double-bubble sign" without dextrocardia. The sonography and echocardiography confirmed the diagnosis of situs inversus abdominus with multiple cardiac anomalies. Laparotomy and a duodenoduodenostomy were carried out.

Keywords: Duodenal atresia, reverse double- bubble, situs inversus abdominus

How to cite this article:
Shankar R, Rao SP, Shetty KB. Duodenal atresia in association with situs inversus abdominus. J Indian Assoc Pediatr Surg 2012;17:71-2

How to cite this URL:
Shankar R, Rao SP, Shetty KB. Duodenal atresia in association with situs inversus abdominus. J Indian Assoc Pediatr Surg [serial online] 2012 [cited 2022 Jul 6];17:71-2. Available from: https://www.jiaps.com/text.asp?2012/17/2/71/93967

   Introduction Top

Situs inversus is a rare condition with a frequency of about one in 10,000 of the normal population. [1],[2] This condition is found to be associated with cardiac and splenic malformations. [3] However, the association of duodenal atresia with situs inversus is very rare, with just about 20 cases reported in the literature so far. [4],[5] We report this case to highlight the "reverse double-bubble" sign as a means of identifying this condition, abdominal sonography for confirmation and the importance of keeping the "mirror" anatomy in mind while carrying out the surgery.

   Case Report Top

A 1.9-kg preterm (36 weeks) male child, born by caesarean section to a 2 nd gravida mother, was seen on day 2 of life. The antenatal ultrasonogram at 32 weeks of gestation had revealed findings suggestive of duodenal atresia with left ventricular hypoplasia. The child had not passed meconium and had bilious nasogastric aspirates. The examination revealed upper abdominal fullness, more prominent in the right hypochondrium. The infantogram showed double-bubble sign with gastric shadow in the right and cardiac shadow normally placed [Figure 1]. The abdominal sonography confirmed situs inversus with the liver on the left side and the spleen on the right side. An echocardiography revealed situs solitus with hypoplastic left ventricle, double-outlet right ventricle, small atrial septal defect and small ventricular septal defect.
Figure 1: Reverse double-bubble

Click here to view

The child underwent laparotomy on the 4 th day of life. The child had type 1 duodenal atresia with situs inversus abdominus. A side-to-side duodeno-duodenostomy was performed. Postoperatively, the baby required ventilatory support for a day and parenteral nutrition for 7 days. A contrast study confirmed a patent anastomosis without any leak. The feeds were initiated and gradually increased. The parents were advised to visit a higher cardiac center for the management of congenital cardiac anomalies.

   Discussion Top

Among the known congenital anomalies associated with duodenal atresia, the more common ones are Down's syndrome, cardiac anomalies, annular pancreas and malrotation. [6] Situs inversus abdominus, also called abdominal heterotaxia or isolated levocardia, is characterized by inversion of the abdominal organs but with a normally located left-sided heart. It is quite an uncommon condition, with a frequency ranging from one in 4,000 to one in 20,000 live births. [1] It is commonly associated with serious cardiac and splenic malformations. [7]

The association of abdominal situs inversus with congenital duodenal obstruction is very rare, with only about 20 cases reported so far in the literature. The majority of them, 10 cases, had either annular pancreas or duodenal web. [4] Preduodenal portal vein, duodenal stenosis and complete atresia have also been reported singly or jointly. [4]

The embryological explanation for the occurrence of duodenal atresia is the theory of "failure to recanalise" in the 12 th week of intrauterine life from the solid cord stage. This can lead to duodenal stenosis, a web with or without central aperture or a complete atresia. Genetics and embryology of situs inversus is complex. [8]

Situs inversus can be totally asymptomatic and detected incidentally at laparotomy or autopsy. However, when associated with duodenal atresia, it is detected in the newborn period. The diagnosis can be made with a plain radiograph of the chest and abdomen, which reveals "reverse double-bubble." In a case of situs inversus abdominus, one is likely to think, as we did initially in this case, of wrong labeling of the side on the radiograph, as it is the more common occurrence. An ultrasonography of the abdomen would clinch the condition and an echocardiogram is necessary to confirm the position of the cardia and detect any associated anomalies. The treatment does not differ whether or not duodenal atresia is associated with situs inversus. Duodenoduodenostomy remains the surgery of choice.

   Conclusion Top

The association of duodenal atresia with situs inversus abdominus is extremely rare. With prompt recognition of the condition, surgical incision can be planned preoperatively. The "mirror anatomy" should be kept in mind while performing the surgery. The outcome is no different from the duodenal atresia without situs inversus, as the prognosis depends on the gravity of the associated cardiac anomalies.

   References Top

1.Le Wald LT. Complete transposition of the viscera: A report of twenty-nine cases, with remark on etiology. JAMA 1925;84:216-68.   Back to cited text no. 1
2.Casey B. Genetics of human situs abnormalities. Am J Med Genet 2001;101:356-8.   Back to cited text no. 2
3.Gray SW, Skandalakis JE. Body asymetry and splenic anomalies. In: Gray SW, Skandalis JE, editors. Embryology for Surgeons. Philadelphia: Saunders; 1972. p. 877-95.  Back to cited text no. 3
4.Nawaz A, Matta H, Hamchou M, Jacobez A, Trad O, Al Salem AH. Situs inversus abdominus in association with congenital duodenal obstruction: A report of two cases and review of the literature. Pediatr Surg Int 2005;21:589-92.  Back to cited text no. 4
5.Sharma S, Rashid AK, Dube R, Malik GK, Tandon RK. Congenital duodenal obstruction with situs inversus totalis: Report of a rare association and discussion. J Indian Assoc Pediatr Surg 2008;13:77-8.  Back to cited text no. 5
[PUBMED]  Medknow Journal  
6.Sweed Y. Duodenal obstruction. In: Puri P, editor. Newborn Surgery. 2 nd ed. London: Arnold; 2003. p. 423.  Back to cited text no. 6
7.Akel S, Halabi J, Shamis R. Abdominal situs inversus with congenital duodenal stenosis: Rare association. Eur J Pediatr Surg 1998;8:55-7.  Back to cited text no. 7
8.Lee SE, Kim HY, Jung SE, Lee SC, Park KW, Kim WK. Sites anomalies and gastrointestinal abnormalities. J Pediatr Surg 2006;41:1237-42.  Back to cited text no. 8


  [Figure 1]

This article has been cited by
1 Situs Inversus Totalis in Association With Duodenal Atresia
Murtadha A Alshaikh, Hussain A Al Ghadeer, Hamed Alabad, Madinah Almohsin, Roqaia A Al Ali
Cureus. 2021;
[Pubmed] | [DOI]
Naveen Kumar S, Ravi Shankar R B, Uma R B, Vanya Shukla, Mukunda Krishnan
Journal of Evidence Based Medicine and Healthcare. 2014; 1(1): 8
[Pubmed] | [DOI]
3 Situs inversus in association with duodenal atresia
Talabi, A.O., Sowande, O.A., Tanimola, A.G., Adejuyigbe, O.
African Journal of Paediatric Surgery. 2013; 20(3): 275-278


Print this article  Email this article


    Similar in PUBMED
   Search Pubmed for
   Search in Google Scholar for
 Related articles
    Article in PDF (375 KB)
    Citation Manager
    Access Statistics
    Reader Comments
    Email Alert *
    Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)  

   Case Report
    Article Figures

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded128    
    Comments [Add]    
    Cited by others 3    

Recommend this journal

Contact us | Sitemap | Advertise | What's New | Copyright and Disclaimer | Privacy Notice

  2005 - Journal of Indian Association of Pediatric Surgeons | Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow 

Online since 1st May '05