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Falciform Ligament
Digestive System

Falciform Ligament

Ligamentum falciforme

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The falciform ligament is formed by a double layer of peritoneum, which is derived embryologically from the ventral mesentery of the liver.

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Key Features/Anatomical Relations

The falciform ligament is attached to the liver, diaphragm, and anterior abdominal wall. During development, the umbilical vein passes from the mother’s placenta, through the fetal umbilicus and in between the two layers of the falciform ligament as it courses into the liver. Following birth, the umbilical vein eventually closes and is referred to as the ligamentum teres hepatis, or the round ligament of the liver (Standring, 2016).

The left layer of the ligament is continuous with the left triangular ligament.


The falciform ligament provides support to the liver by anchoring the liver to the anterior abdominal wall and the diaphragm. It also serves as the passage through which the umbilical vein travels from the mother’s placenta to the developing liver.

List of Clinical Correlates

- Portal hypertension

- Portocaval anastomoses

- Cirrhosis

- Caput medusae


Standring, S. (2016) Gray's Anatomy: The Anatomical Basis of Clinical Practice. Gray's Anatomy Series 41 edn.: Elsevier Limited.

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Falciform Ligament

ScienceDirect image

As the falciform ligament continues toward the diaphragm, the peritoneal sheets composing the ligament separate to adopt a triangular shape that broadly covers the entry of the hepatic veins into the inferior vena cava.

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