Facilitating Appendix Extraction Following Laparoscopic Surgery
A new study describes a safe way to remove the appendix following laparoscopic appendectomy in pediatric patients.

Developed by researchers at Ospedale Regionale Bellinzona e Valli (Switzerland) the technique uses the cut end of a sterile surgical latex glove to isolate and remove the resected appendix intact from the surgery site, so that surgeons can avoid the need for wide surgical incisions. The technique ensures that the patient’s abdominal wall is not exposed to the appendix’s inflamed tissue during the removal process.

For the study, the researchers retrospectively analyzed the files of 291 children (2–16 years of age) who were operated on by laparoscopic appendectomy between September 2004 and April 2015 using the technique. The results showed that the appendix was easily extracted in all the cases, no intraoperative complications related to the technique were observed, and overall, only one patient presented wound complications. The study was published in the January 2016 issue of the Journal of Pediatric Surgery.

“Avoiding wide surgical incisions and abdominal wall contaminations is essential during laparoscopic appendectomies in children. Our easy, safe and cheap technique allows these important goals to be achieved,” concluded lead author Mario Mendoza-Sagaon, MD, and colleagues of the department of pediatric surgery.

Following laparoscopic appendectomy the appendix should be removed from the peritoneal cavity as soon as it is transected, so that it does not contaminate surfaces or leak tainted fluids from its lumen. As wound protection is essential, the appendix must be extracted intact. If not, peritoneal defenses may not sufficient to control the extent of contamination, with the end result being more frequent postoperative abscesses.