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Suprarenal Adrenal Gland

  1. Suprarenal (adrenal) glands are a pair of endocrine glands situated retroperitoneally in posterior abdominal wall on each side of vertebral column on upper pole of corresponding kidney. Right suprarenal gland is triangular or pyramidal in shape and left is semilunar in shape. Each gland measures 50 mm in height, 30 mm in breadth and 10 mm in thickness. Weight of each suprarenal gland is about 5 gm. Each suprarenal gland is divided into outer cortex and inner medulla.
  2. Right suprarenal gland is triangular or pyramidal with an apex, a base, two surfaces (anterior and posterior), and three borders (anterior, medial, and lateral). Left suprarenal gland is semilunar with two ends (upper and lower), two surfaces (anterior and posterior) and two borders (medial and lateral).


Right suprarenal gland

Left suprarenal gland





Parts & relation

Apex: Bare area of liver

Base: Upper pole of right kidney

Upper end: Close to spleen

Lower end: Presents hilum, left vein emerges from here   

Anterior surface

Inferior vena cava

Bare area of liver

Cardiac end of stomach, pancreas with splenic

Posterior surface

Right crus of diaphragm, right kidney

Left crus of diaphragm, left kidney

Anterior Border

Presents hilum, right vein emerges


Medical Border

Coeliac ganglion, right inferior phrenic artery

Coeliac ganglion, left inferior phrenic artery, left
gastric arteries

Lateral Border




Blood supply and lymphatics

  1. Arterial supply of adrenal gland is by three arteries: - (i) Superior suprarenal artery (branch of inferior phrenic artery,(ii) Middle suprarenal artery (branch of abdominal aorta; and (ill) inferior suprarenal artery (branch of renal artery.
  2. Venous drainage is through suprarenal vein. Right suprarenal (adrenal) vein drains into IVC, and left
  3. suprarenal vein drains into the left renal vein and then into IVC.
  4. Lymphatics from suprarenal glands drain into lateral aortic (para-aortic) nodes.

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