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May 1976

Basilar Pneumonia Simulating Acute Appendicitis in Children

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Pediatric Surgery, University of Kentucky Medical Center, Lexington, Ky.

Arch Surg. 1976;111(5):552-553. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1976.01360230052009

• Twelve children with acute abdominal pain, which was suspected of being acute appendicitis, were subsequently found to have lower lobe pneumonia. Diagnostic barium enema or operative exploration failed to demonstrate any appendiceal abnormality. The abdominal symptoms and the ileus subsided soon after the initiation of antibiotic therapy. Contrary to common belief, it was observed that left-sided pneumonia is capable of mimicking appendicitis almost as frequently as right-sided pneumonia. Since the likelihood of acute appendicitis accompanying pneumonia is small, operative intervention is rarely indicated and should be undertaken only after careful and intensive investigation.

(Arch Surg 111:552-553, 1976)

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