Preoperative Factors Associated with Appendiceal Tumors in Nonelective Appendectomy

Sheena W. Chen, Tammy Ju, Ivy N. Haskins, Lisbi Rivas, Andrew D. Sparks, Khashayar Vaziri, Hope T. Jackson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Background: The rates of incidental appendiceal neoplasms after appendectomy performed for acute appendicitis is <2%. To date, no large studies have investigated the preoperative risk factors or imaging findings associated with incidental appendiceal tumors that present as appendicitis. Our study aims to identify preoperative factors that are associated with an increased risk of appendiceal tumors in patients who present with signs and symptoms of acute appendicitis. Materials and Methods: Using the targeted appendectomy American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program database, we identified patients who underwent nonelective appendectomy for acute appendicitis in 2016. Patients with final pathology consistent with a tumor were compared with those with only appendicitis. A nonmatched case/control method was used to pull a random sample from the appendicitis cohort using a 1:4 ratio (tumor: Acute appendicitis) to obtain adequate power for comparison. Preoperative patient variables and imaging findings were investigated using stepwise logistic regression to identify variables associated with appendiceal tumor. Results: Following multivariate analysis, preoperative imaging read of "indeterminate"and "not consistent with appendicitis,"female gender, increased age, and lower preoperative white blood cell (WBC) count were significant predictors of tumor causing symptoms of appendicitis. The odds of having tumor pathology were significantly increased in patients with preoperative imaging of "indeterminate"and "not consistent with appendicitis."The odds of having tumor pathology were 82% higher for females than for males, increased by 2% for every 1-year increase in age, and increased by 3% for every one-unit decrease in WBC count. Conclusion: While incidental appendiceal tumors can present as acute appendicitis, 3 patient variables and one imaging finding were identified that may increase suspicion for appendiceal tumors. Consideration should be given to patients with these associated risk factors for additional preoperative consultation in addition to the potential for intraoperative pathology consultation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1344-1349
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Laparoendoscopic and Advanced Surgical Techniques
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • acute appendicitis
  • appendiceal tumor
  • laparoscopic appendectomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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