Heterotopic gastric tissue simulating acute appendicitis

May 20, 2008

It is not uncommon to find tissue that normally lines the stomach in locations outside of the digestive tract. This "heterotopic" gastric tissue has been identified in such diverse locations as the scrotum, the gall bladder, and the spinal cord.

This case, reported by a team led by Dr. Steven Paul Schmidt, is described in the April 14, 2008 edition of the World Journal of Gastroenterology.

Typically, when this gastric tissue is located outside of the digestive system it presents no problems to the patient. This report, however, describes a patient in which the heterotopic gastric tissue became inflamed. The tissue was located in an anatomic position such that the inflammation simulated signs and symptoms of acute appendicitis.

A patient arrived in the Emergency Room with what appeared to be a relatively standard case of appendicitis. The pain had originated in the peri-umbilical area, but had localized to the right lower side of the abdomen when the patient was examined in the emergency room. The patient also had an elevated white blood cell count supporting the diagnosis of acute appendicitis.

However, when the appendix of this patient was exposed surgically it did not show any signs of inflammation. Upon further examination, Dr. Bender exposed what appeared to be an enlarged, inflamed lymph node adjacent to the appendix in connective tissue. When this lymph node was removed and examined by the pathologist it was shown convincingly to be tissue that normally lines the stomach. In addition, this gastric tissue was inflamed and showed signs of gastritis.

The patient's pain resolved as soon the heterotopic gastric tissue was removed and he has remained asymptomatic since that time.

This is an unique surgical case presentation. Although this is an extremely rare presentation, it's believed surgeons needs to be aware of the possibility of heterotopic gastric tissue simulating appendicitis when the appendix otherwise appears normal.

Source: World Journal of Gastroenterology

Explore further: Jobless and poor, Ghana's youth turn to selling blood

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Marcellus drilling boom may have led to too many hotel rooms

56 minutes ago

Drilling in Pennsylvania's Marcellus Shale region led to a rapid increase in both the number of hotels and hotel industry jobs, but Penn State researchers report that the faltering occupancy rate may signal that there are ...

Recommended for you

The human race evolved to be fair for selfish reasons

Sep 19, 2014

"Make sure you play fairly," often say parents to their kids. In fact, children do not need encouragement to be fair, it is a unique feature of human social life, which emerges in childhood. When given the o ...

Non-stop PET/CT scan provides accurate images

Sep 18, 2014

Siemens is improving PET/CT imaging and data quality while reducing radiation exposure. The Biograph mCT Flow PET/CT scanner is a new positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) system that, ...

User comments : 0