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Appendectomy may be best for patients with positive CT exam
Date:5/25/2010

moved within four days. Ninety-five percent of those cases were confirmed as acute appendicitis.

Forty-nine (10%) of 516 patients had nonsurgical treatment, including antibiotics or percutaneous abscess drainage. An additional four of 516 patients were lost to follow up.

Thirteen (three percent) of the 516 patients with positive CT findings did not receive immediate surgical treatment because their symptoms including a normal appetite, absence of nausea and vomiting, normal white blood cell count and mild or resolving pain were atypical for acute appendicitis. Of those, five (38 percent) ultimately had their appendix removed after seeking treatment for the same symptoms an average of four months later. Appendicitis was confirmed in all cases.

"The results of our study confirm that CT is a good diagnostic tool for appendicitis and that surgeons should be wary of dismissing positive CT findings," Dr. Webb said. "Prompt treatment of chronic or recurrent appendicitis can prevent patients from developing complications or other future ill effects."

The study's findings may also help explain the disparity between CT results that indicate appendicitis and patient symptoms that do not.

"When the appendix is not completely obstructed, it can result in a milder form of appendicitis that is chronic or recurring," Dr. Webb said. "But the three forms of appendicitis, acute, chronic and recurrent, are indistinguishable on CT scans.


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Contact: Linda Brooks
lbrooks@rsna.org
630-590-7762
Radiological Society of North America
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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