A Novel Lymphaticovenular Anastomosis Rat Model

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Lymphaticovenular anastomosis (LVA) has become an important procedure for the surgical treatment of lymphedema. In the past, the anatomy of the lymphatic system of animal models has been reported. However, to our knowledge, there have been few reports of animal models of LVA including training model. In this study, we report on a relatively simple and ideal animal LVA model based on peritoneal lymph ducts and veins.

Patients and Methods

For 10 rats, diameters of lumbar lymphatic ducts and iliolumbar veins in the peritoneal cavity on both sides were measured, and LVA was performed. In addition, we measured the diameters of 28 lymphatic ducts and veins in 8 patients who had previously undergone LVA and compared the results with those obtained in this rat model.


The mean diameter of the lymphatic ducts was 0.61 mm, and the iliolumbar veins were 0.81 mm. On the other hand, the mean diameters of the 28 lymphatic ducts and veins of the 8 patients in whom we performed LVA were 0.58 and 0.76 mm, respectively. The differences in the diameters of the lymph vessels and veins between the rats and patients were not statistically significant.


We report on an LVA model involving the use of the lumbar lymphatic duct and iliolumbar veins of rats. The diameter, nature, and placement of the anastomosis using this model are very similar to that noted during real human surgery. We believe that our rat model will be useful as a practical training model for LVA and in studies on postoperative changes in LVA.

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