Severe pain in right lower quadrant since 3 days. No vomiting. No fever. Tenderness in RLQ.
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Dilatation of appendix with thickened walls, measuring about 1.4 cm in diameter. Adjacent cecal wall thickening.
There is discontinuity in the wall of appendix at its base with surrounding fluid which is highly suspicious for rupture of appendix. Mild fluid present around the appendix and inflammation present in surrounding fat.
As ultrasound involves no ionizing radiation and is a better modality for gynecologic conditions, it is recommended as the initial imaging modality in chidren, young women and during pregnancy. It has very high sensitivity and specificity for diagnosing appendicitis.
Graded compression technique described by Puylaert is standard method for US evaluation of acute appendicitis. Slow, gentle maintained pressure at maximum point of pain and tenderness helps to demonstrate appendix easily. If patient is not allowing to compress, we can use Baldisserotto’s technique of changing patients position to displace bowel loops. It is very important to localize cecum which helps as a guide in search for appendix.
In this case both techniques were used as the patient was obese. Turning patient to left lateral position immediately demonstrated dilated appendix.
Dilatation of appendix more than 6mm, surrounding fluid and enlarged lymphnodes confirmas the diagnosis of appendicitis. Patient also experiences severe probe tenderness on performing US.
- R K Jain, M Jain, C L Rajak, S Mukherjee et al. Imaging in acute appendicitis: A review. Ind J Radiol Imag 2006 16:4:523-532.