Laparoscopic Appendectomy in Complicated Appendicitis of Children

Document Type: Research/Original Article


Pediatric Surgery Research Center, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, IR Iran


Background: Laparoscopy is not an accepted procedure for complicated appendicitis in children for most pediatric surgeons. This procedure is associated with a higher incidence of postoperative abdominal abscess reported in some studies.
Objectives: In this study, we investigated the security, efficacy and complications of laparoscopy in children with complicated appendicitis in Mofid Children's Hospital.
Patients and Methods: From April 2010 to January 2013, we performed laparoscopic appendectomy (LA) in all cases of non-complicated and complicated appendicitis (including perforated appendicitis and localized or generalized peritonitis based on the operation findings and pathological reports). Primary outcomes were incidence of complications, intra-abdominal abscess and wound infection. Secondary outcomes were length of operation, length of hospital stay, resumption of diet, incidence of bowel obstruction, duration of antibiotic use and readmission. Laparoscopy appendectomy was performed with two working ports.
Results: LA was performed in 123 children aged 2 to 14 years (mean of eight years) over a 3-year period, of whom only 34 cases had complicated appendicitis (either localized or generalized peritonitis). There was one conversion to open appendectomy (OA) in a patient with appendicular abscess with a mass, which excluded from our analysis. There were 6 patients with generalized peritonitis and 26 patients with localized abscess, and two patients with appendicular mass. The Average duration of symptoms was four days (ranged 3-6 days). The mean length of operation was 52 minutes (ranged 40-80 minutes). The average length of hospital stay was 4.4 days (ranged 4-7 days). They were able to restart oral intake from 16 to 48 hours postoperatively. Two patients (5%) had postoperative complications; one patient with intra-abdominal abscess who underwent reoperation and the second patient with umbilical wound infection was resolved with antibiotherapy. The average follow-up was 14 months (ranged from 4-36 months).
Conclusions: We recommend laparoscopic approach for all children presenting complicated appendicitis as the initial procedure of choice.