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Mesenteric cysts are a very rare cause of abdominal pain and have a wide range of underlying causes.
The term "mesenteric cyst" is considered a descriptive of the location and gross appearance of "any cyst" arising in the mesentery 8.
Mesenteric cysts are rare, with a reported incidence of 0.5-1 per 100,000-250,000 admissions 3,5. There may be a slight female predilection.
Patients usually present with abdominal pain and/or mass, although the cysts can be asymptomatic, incidental finding 3.
They may represent a range of different entities and can have varying etiology.
mesothelial: simple mesothelial cyst, benign cystic mesothelioma, and malignant cystic mesothelioma
mature cystic teratoma (dermoid cysts)
non-pancreatic pseudocysts (infectious and traumatic cysts)
Postulated origins include 4:
a continual growth of congenitally malformed or malpositioned lymphatic tissue
secondary to trauma
degenerating lymph nodes
failure of the leaves of the mesentery to fuse properly
Histological entities classified under this term include:
mesothelium-lined peritoneal simple mesothelial cyst (PSMC)
epithelium-lined enteric duplication cyst (EDC) or enteric cyst
fluid collections with no cellular lining, such as nonpancreatic pseudocysts
Mesenteric cysts can occur anywhere in the mesentery, from the duodenum to the rectum, and may extend into the retroperitoneum. Mesenteric cysts are cystic mesenteric lesions that can be further characterized by the wall thickness (thin or thick-walled) and their loculation (unilocular or multilocular).
Treatment and prognosis
Reported complications include 4:
History and etymology
The first case is thought to have been reported in 1507 by Benevieni 6.
The main differential diagnosis is:
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- 8. Yacoub J, Clark J, Paal E, Manning M. Approach to Cystic Lesions in the Abdomen and Pelvis, with Radiologic-Pathologic Correlation. Radiographics. 2021;41(5):1368-86. doi:10.1148/rg.2021200207 - Pubmed