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Cardiovasc Intervent Radiol. 2014 Dec;37(6):1482-93. doi: 10.1007/s00270-014-0845-x. Epub 2014 Jan 28.

Identifying aberrant hepatic arteries prior to intra-arterial radioembolization.

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  • 1Department of Radiology and Nuclear Medicine, University Medical Center Utrecht, Room E.01.132, Heidelberglaan 100, 3584 CX, Utrecht, The Netherlands,



Failing to identify aberrant hepatic arteries before radioembolization (RE) may compromise its treatment efficacy due to inadequate biodistribution of radioactive microspheres. The purpose of this study was to evaluate how often aberrant hepatic arteries were identified correctly in clinical practice, with computed tomography (CT), and during angiography in patients with liver tumors who received a workup for RE.


The presence and vascularization pattern of aberrant (i.e., accessory and replaced) hepatic arteries was assessed on triphasic liver CT in 110 patients. Subsequently, radiological reports on CT and angiographic procedures were reviewed to determine whether aberrant hepatic arteries were identified correctly in clinical practice. The intrahepatic biodistribution of (99m)Tc-MAA and radioactive microspheres was assessed on SPECT/CT and PET/CT in all patients with unidentified aberrant hepatic arteries.


Thirty-seven of 110 patients (34%) had aberrant hepatic arteries. In 18 of 37 (49%) patients, the aberrant hepatic arteries were correctly identified on CT and in 32 of 37 (86%) during angiography. Aberrant right hepatic arteries were identified more frequently than aberrant left hepatic arteries on CT (54 vs. 44%) and during angiography (100 vs. 69%, p = 0.007). In five patients (14%), an aberrant left hepatic artery remained unidentified, resulting in a lack of (99m)Tc-MAA and (90)Y activity in the segmental territory of the unidentified aberrant hepatic arteries.


Aberrant left hepatic arteries were the most common unidentified aberrant hepatic arteries, resulting in incomplete radiation coverage. We formulated a practical approach to identify aberrant hepatic arteries correctly before RE.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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