Floating appendix: post-traumatic amputation of the appendix
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Appendicitis following trauma is a well-documented sequela of blunt trauma to the abdomen, while appendiceal transection following trauma is extremely rare. Literature reports have documented appendicitis and appendiceal transection as the presenting pathology in a trauma setting. This is first report of auto-amputation of the appendix as a delayed presentation with peritonitis, which was detected during the second surgery in a child with blunt abdominal trauma.

A 11-year-old Asian boy presented to the center with a 2-day history of blunt abdominal trauma and chief complaint of severe abdominal pain. On evaluation, a computed tomography scan showed gross pneumoperitoneum. The child underwent emergency laparotomy, where a jejunal perforation was noted, which was repaired. The rest of the bowel and solid organs were healthy. The child was managed in the intensive care unit postoperatively, when he developed a burst abdomen.

During the second surgery, pyoperitoneum and free-floating appendix were found in the left paracolic gutter. After peritoneal wash, the bowel was noted to be healthy and the previous jejunal repair was intact. The child was allowed oral intake of food and discharged on postoperative days 4 and 8, respectively. At the 1-year follow-up, he remained asymptomatic.

This case report is unique as it describes auto-amputation of the appendix as a delayed event in the course of treatment for blunt trauma of the abdomen. Although a remote event, the possibility of amputation of the appendix should be retained as a differential diagnosis and unusual complication in cases of delayed peritonitis.

Source: https://jmedicalcasereports.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13256-021-02747-z#Fig2
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