Laparoscopic Appendectomy After 30 Weeks Pregnancy: Report of Two Cases and Description of Technique

Barnes, Stephen L.; Shane, Matthew D.; Schoemann, Mark B.; Bernard, Andrew C.; Boulanger, Bernard R.
August 2004
American Surgeon;Aug2004, Vol. 70 Issue 8, p733
Academic Journal
Appendicitis and pregnancy are both common conditions, and when they co-exist, both the general surgeon and obstetrician are presented with unique challenges. Acute appendicitis is the most common cause of the acute abdomen during pregnancy, effecting 0.1-0.3 per cent of pregnancies each year. With an estimated 4 million deliveries per year in the United States, there are potentially as many as 12,000 cases of acute appendicitis to be managed by the general surgeon during pregnancy (Eur J Surg 1992;158:603-6; Curr Surg 2003;60:164-73). Laparoscopic appendectomy has become a routine procedure and is now widely performed in North America. Although laparoscopic appendectomy has been discussed during pregnancy, limited data is available on the role of laparoscopic appendectomy in the third trimester of pregnancy. In fact, some authors have advocated a gestational age of 26-28 weeks to be the upper gestational limit for successful completion of laparoscopic surgery (Obstet Gynecol Surg 2001;56:50-9). In this paper, we present two recent cases of successful laparoscopic appendectomy during late pregnancy without immediate complication to mother or fetus and a description of our operative technique.


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