Starry Night sign

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Starry Night sign2016-11-22T14:43:45+00:00

Starry Night sign 

Starry Night sign of spleen image from New Medical Terms

ruptured spleen with “Starry Night sign” extravasation of blood


A descriptive term for the appearance of the capillary phase of arteriography of a traumatised spleen*, which displays small rounded gobs of extravasated contrast material in the marginal sinusoidal circulation. 

*Faintly discernable in the 3 o’clock to 5 o’clock position
The appearance has been fancifully

Starry nigh composite image from New Medical Terms

Composite of van Gogh’s Starry Night paintings

likened to the sky in Vincent van Gogh’s The Starry Night, painted in 1889 at St Remy-de-Provence. Whilst it seems likely that JH Scatliff et al, who coined the term (Am J Roentgenol Radium Ther Nucl Med. 1975 Sep;125(1):91-8), were referring to the better known The Starry Night, (left image) which lives in the MOMA’s permanent collection in NYC, to my eye, the splenic changes more closely mimic van Gogh’s lesser known, The Starry Night Over the Rhône (right image) which he painted a few days before his signature piece. That work lives in the Musée d’Orsay in Paris


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