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May 1979

Gas in the Appendix: A Sometimes Significant But Nonspecific Diagnostic Sign

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Radiology, University of Virginia School of Medicine, Charlottesville.

Arch Surg. 1979;114(5):587-589. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1979.01370290037006

• The gas-filled appendix is an uncommon roentgenographic sign that has been considered to be virtually diagnostic of acute appendicitis when the appendix is positioned caudad to the cecum in the right lower quadrant of the abdomen. Three patients had gas in the appendix in the absence of acute appendicitis. This diagnostic sign is therefore not specific for appendicitis. Regardless of its location, the appendix may contain gas despite the absence of intrinsic disease.

(Arch Surg 114:587-589, 1979)