The position of the vermiform appendix at laparoscopy.

Division of Gastrointestinal Surgery, Wolfson Digestive Diseases Centre, Queen's Medical Centre, Nottingham University Hospitals, Nottingham, NG7 2UH, UK.
Surgical and Radiologic Anatomy (Impact Factor: 1.13). 04/2007; 29(2):165-8. DOI: 10.1007/s00276-007-0182-8
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The vermiform appendix has no constant position and the data on the variations in its position are limited. The aim of this study was to determine the frequency of the various positions of the appendix at laparoscopy.
Patients undergoing emergency or elective laparoscopy at a university teaching hospital between April and September 2004 were studied prospectively. The positions of the appendix and the caecum were determined after insertion of the laparoscope, prior to any other procedure and the relative frequencies calculated.
A total of 303 (102 males and 201 females) patients with a median age of 52 years (range 18-93 years) were studied. An emergency appendicectomy was performed in 67 patients, 49 had a diagnostic laparoscopy, 179 underwent a laparoscopic cholecystectomy and eight had other procedures. The caecum was at McBurney's point in 245 (80.9%) patients, pelvic in 45 (14.9%) and high lying in 13 (4.3%). The appendix was pelvic in 155 (51.2%) patients, pre-ileal in 9 (3.0%), para-caecal in 11 (3.6%), post-ileal in 67 (22.1%) and retrocaecal in 61 (20.1%) patients.
Contrary to the common belief the appendix is more often found in the pelvic rather than the retrocaecal position. There is also considerable variation in the position of the caecum.

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