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Concept: Vermiform appendix


Colonoscopy is a widely used diagnostic and therapeutic modality with a relatively low morbidity. However, given the large volume of procedures performed, awareness of the infrequent complications is essential. Perforation is an established complication of colonoscopy, and can range from 0.2%-3% depending on the series, population and modality of colonoscopy. Acute appendicitis after colonoscopy is an extremely rare event, and a cause-effect relationship between the colonoscopy and the appendicitis is not well documented. In addition, awareness of this condition can aid in prompt diagnosis. Relatively mild symptoms and exclusion of bowel perforation by contrast studies do not exclude appendicitis from the differential diagnosis for post-colonoscopy pain. In addition to the difficult diagnosis inherent to postcolonoscopy appendicitis, treatment strategies have varied greatly. This paper reviews these approaches. We also expand upon prior articles by giving guidance for the role of nonoperative management in these patients. This case and review of the literature will help to create awareness about this complication, and guide optimal treatment of pericolonoscopy appendicitis.

Concepts: Medical terms, Diagnosis, Medical emergencies, Medical diagnosis, Differential diagnosis, Peritonitis, Rectal examination, Vermiform appendix


Foreign bodies are a rare cause of appendicitis. In most instances, ingested foreign bodies pass through the alimentary tract asymptomatically. However, those that enter the lumen of the vermiform appendix may not be able to re-enter the colon and may initiate an inflammatory process. We report a case of acute appendicitis induced by an unusual foreign body.

Concepts: Inflammation, Digestive system, Large intestine, Gastroenterology, Peritonitis, Appendicitis, Vermiform appendix, Appendicectomy


BACKGROUND: Acute appendicitis is the most prevalent emergency surgical diagnosis in children. Although traditionally a clinical diagnosis, the diagnosis of acute appendicitis is uncertain in approximately 30% of pediatric patients. In attempts to avoid a misdiagnosis and facilitate earlier definitive care, imaging modalities such as ultrasonography have become important tools. In many pediatric studies, the absence of a visualized appendix with no secondary sonographic features has been reported as a negative study result, and a study where the appendix is not seen but demonstrates secondary features is often deemed equivocal. With ultrasound appendiceal detection rates reported at 60% to 89%, the dilemma of the nonvisualized appendix or equivocal study is frequently faced by clinicians. OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to assess the value of the nonvisualized appendix on ultrasound and the association of secondary sonographic findings in pediatric patients with acute right lower quadrant pain undergoing ultrasound, in whom acute appendicitis was a diagnostic consideration. METHODS: Retrospective case review of 662 consecutive children (age < 18 years) presenting to a pediatric emergency department with clinically suspected appendicitis, who had graded compression sonographic studies during the 24-month study period, was performed. RESULTS: The appendix could not be visualized in 241 studies (37.7%). An alternate diagnosis was identified via sonography in 47 patients (19.5%). Twenty-five patients (12.9%) were taken for surgery where 17 (8.8%) had acute appendicitis confirmed via pathology. The specificity of moderate-to-large amounts of free fluid is 98%, phlegmon at 100%, pericecal inflammatory fat changes at 98%, and any free fluids with prominent lymph nodes at 81%. The odds ratio of appendicitis increases from 0.56 to 0.64 to 2.3 and 17.5, respectively, when there were 2 and 3 ultrasonographic inflammatory markers identified. CONCLUSIONS: Although uncommonly seen, large amounts of free fluid, phlegmon, and pericecal inflammatory fat changes were very specific signs of acute appendicitis. In the absence of a distinctly visualized appendix, the presence of multiple secondary inflammatory changes provides increasing support of a diagnosis of acute appendicitis.

Concepts: Inflammation, Hospital, Medical imaging, Physician, Medical ultrasonography, Contrast-enhanced ultrasound, Appendicitis, Vermiform appendix


The aim of the study was to compare the clinical outcomes and histological findings in prompt and delayed appendectomy for acute appendicitis.

Concepts: Medicine, General surgery, Appendicitis, Vermiform appendix, Appendicectomy


Primary acute appendicitis is by far the most common pathological condition affecting the appendix. There are differential diagnoses, however, when an abnormal appendix is found by imaging. The purpose of this paper is to highlight the imaging and clinical manifestations of less common appendiceal abnormalities in children. Familiarity with these alternative diagnoses might be particularly helpful in guiding management of the child whose clinical presentation is not typical for primary acute appendicitis.

Concepts: Inflammation, Medical terms, Pathology, Medical diagnosis, Medical school, Appendicitis, Vermiform appendix, Appendicectomy


INTRODUCTION: Acute appendicitis (AA) is common surgical problem associated with acute-phase reaction. Blood tests role in decision-making process is unclear. This retrospective study aimed to determine diagnostic value of preoperative evaluation of white blood cells (WBCs) and neutrophils and its value in predicting AA severity. METHODS: Medical records of 456 patients who underwent appendectomy during 4-years period were retrospectively reviewed. Patients were subdivided according to histological finding into: normal appendix (n = 29), uncomplicated inflamed appendix (n = 350), complicated appendicitis (n = 77). Diagnostic performances of WBCs and neutrophils were analyzed using receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves. RESULTS: WBCs and neutrophils counts were higher in patients with inflamed and complicated appendix than normal appendix and in complicated than inflamed appendix. In patients, WBCs count 9.400 x 103/mL had sensitivity of 76.81%, specificity of 65.52%, positive predictive value (PPV) of 97.0%, negative predictive value (NPV) of 16.1%, positive likelihood ratio [LR(+)] of 2.23, negative LR() of 0.35. Neutrophil count 7.540 x 103/mL had sensitivity of 70.96%, specificity of 65.52%, PPV of 96.8%, NPV of 13.3%, LR(+) of 2.06, LR() of 0.44. Areas under ROC curve were 0.701, 0.680 for elevated WBCs and neutrophils count. CONCLUSIONS: Clinicians should not rely on either elevated WBCs or neutrophils count as appendicitis indicator as clinical data are superior in decision-making appendectomy.

Concepts: White blood cell, Positive predictive value, Negative predictive value, Neutrophil granulocyte, Receiver operating characteristic, Binary classification, Appendicitis, Vermiform appendix


For more than a century, appendicectomy has been the treatment of choice for appendicitis. Recent trials have challenged this view. This study assessed the benefits and harms of antibiotic therapy compared with appendicectomy in patients with non-perforated appendicitis.

Concepts: Medicine, Antibiotic resistance, Phage therapy, Antibiotic, General surgery, Appendicitis, Vermiform appendix, Appendicectomy


Nonoperative treatment (NOT) with antibiotics alone of acute uncomplicated appendicitis (AUA) in children has been proposed as an alternative to appendectomy.

Concepts: General surgery, Appendicitis, Vermiform appendix, Appendicectomy


Despite a scarcity of supporting evidence, most surgeons recommend routine interval appendicectomy after successful non-operative treatment of an appendix mass in children. We aimed to compare routine interval appendicectomy with active observation.

Concepts: Randomized controlled trial, Appendicitis, Vermiform appendix, Appendicectomy


Acute appendicitis (AA) is among the most common cause of acute abdominal pain. Diagnosis of AA is challenging; a variable combination of clinical signs and symptoms has been used together with laboratory findings in several scoring systems proposed for suggesting the probability of AA and the possible subsequent management pathway. The role of imaging in the diagnosis of AA is still debated, with variable use of US, CT and MRI in different settings worldwide. Up to date, comprehensive clinical guidelines for diagnosis and management of AA have never been issued. In July 2015, during the 3rd World Congress of the WSES, held in Jerusalem (Israel), a panel of experts including an Organizational Committee and Scientific Committee and Scientific Secretariat, participated to a Consensus Conference where eight panelists presented a number of statements developed for each of the eight main questions about diagnosis and management of AA. The statements were then voted, eventually modified and finally approved by the participants to The Consensus Conference and lately by the board of co-authors. The current paper is reporting the definitive Guidelines Statements on each of the following topics: 1) Diagnostic efficiency of clinical scoring systems, 2) Role of Imaging, 3) Non-operative treatment for uncomplicated appendicitis, 4) Timing of appendectomy and in-hospital delay, 5) Surgical treatment 6) Scoring systems for intra-operative grading of appendicitis and their clinical usefulness 7) Non-surgical treatment for complicated appendicitis: abscess or phlegmon 8) Pre-operative and post-operative antibiotics.

Concepts: Abdominal pain, Medical diagnosis, Medical sign, General surgery, Pelvic inflammatory disease, Appendicitis, Vermiform appendix, Alvarado score