LIVER metastases are rarely considered a cause of acute surgical abdomen. Cope1 states "... it has been (the writer's) aim to put down nothing which has not been frequently confirmed and demonstrated in his own experience." He fails to mention liver metastases as a cause of acute abdomen.
A review of operations at the Minneapolis Veterans Administration Hospital from 1953 to 1965 reveals six cases of acute abdomen where cancer in the liver was found at laparotomy. Cholecystitis was suspected in four cases, subhepatic abscess in one, and appendicitis in one. The site of the primary tumor was the colon (case 1 and 2), pancreas (case 3 and probable in case 4), small intestine (case 5), and liver (case 6).
Report of Cases
Case 1 (146590).
—A 69-year-old man was admitted with the diagnosis "acute cholecystitis, cholelithiasis, rule out peptic ulcer." He had been troubled with an upset stomach and
HEUPEL HW. Liver Metastases Simulating Acute Surgical Abdomen. Arch Surg. 1966;92(2):273-276. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1966.01320200113018