Hepatic vein

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The hepatic veins are the venous drainage routes of the liver . In addition to the liver's own blood (via the common hepatic artery ), they also transport the blood from the portal vein into the inferior vena cava and thus the body's circulation .

The hepatic vein system begins with the central veins of the hepatic lobules. These unite to form increasingly larger veins. In humans there are usually three major hepatic veins:

  • Vena hepatica sinistra (left hepatic vein, carries the blood from the left lobe of the liver)
  • Vena hepatica media (middle hepatic vein, carries the blood from the lobe of the caudate) and
  • Vena hepatica dextra (right liver vein, carries blood from the right lobe of the liver).

These branches flow into the inferior vena cava in front of the diaphragm , with the left and middle branches often joining together to form a common trunk.

Sonographically , the hepatic veins - in contrast to the portal vein branches - are usually shown without any clear delimitation. Obstructions of the hepatic veins lead to portal hypertension (→ Budd-Chiari syndrome ).


  • Wolfgang Dauber, Heinz Feneis: Bildlexikon der Anatomie . Georg Thieme Verlag, 9th ed. 2004, ISBN 9783133301091 , p. 290.
  • Volker Hofmann et al .: Ultrasound Diagnostics in Pediatrics and Pediatric Surgery: Textbook and Atlas . Georg Thieme Verlag, 3rd edition 2004, ISBN 9783131009531 , p. 241.