Dropped appendicolith

Last revised by Dr Daniel J Bell on 18 Jun 2021

Dropped appendicoliths, also called retained or slipped appendicoliths, are appendicoliths that have been inadvertently left inside the peritoneal cavity following appendectomy.

Patients may be asymptomatic in some cases. Other cases may present with infective symptoms due to abscess formation. The interval between surgery and presentation varies considerably from days to even years 1.

Dropped appendicoliths may result from either a ruptured appendix or from being spilled during surgery.

Retained appendicoliths have the following appearances on CT 1:

  • high density foci (the appendicolith) most commonly in the paracaecal region or Morison's pouch
  • often associated abscess formation

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1
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