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What is corona mortis?

Asked by Swash 

Corona mortis (crown of death or circle of death) is the vascular anastomosis between the obturator artery (branch of internal iliac system) and the inferior epigastric artery or external iliac artery (external iliac system). These vessels in the retropubic area are hard to distinguish and can be injured in groin or pubic surgery, leading to massive uncontrolled bleeding. An aberrant obturator artery may arise from the external iliac artery or obturator artery (20-30%) and is vulnerable during surgical repair of femoral hernia. Major hemorrhages from corona mortis require urgent laparotomy. The distance between pubic symphysis and corona mortis is up to 96 mm.

Source: Papagrigorakis, E., Gkarsioudis, K., Skandalakis, P., & Filippou, D. (2018). Corona Mortis: Surgical Anatomy, Physiology and Clinical Significance.


1. Gross Anatomy By Kyung Won Chung, Harold M. Chung

2. Laparoscopic Urogynecology: Principles and Practice edited by Christian Phillips, Stephen Jeffery, Barry O'Reilly, Marie Fidela R. Paraiso, Bruno Deval