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J Pediatr Surg. 2013 Mar;48(3):e1-4. doi: 10.1016/j.jpedsurg.2012.12.042.

Wandering spleen as a cause of mesenteric and portal varices: a new etiology?

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Division of Pediatric Surgery, Mayo Clinic, SW, Rochester, MN 55905, USA.


Wandering spleen is a rare clinical entity characterized by spleen hypermobility due to lack or weakness of one or more splenic ligaments. We report two patients with the diagnosis of wandering spleen with portal and mesenteric varices. A 16 year-old girl presented with abdominal pain, an abdominal mass and pancytopenia. A 12 year-old girl presented with an abdominal mass only. Imaging studies revealed both patients had a viable but torsed wandering spleen in association with portal, splenic and mesenteric varices. Both were treated with splenectomy and had resolution of their symptoms. Imaging confirmed complete resolution of all varices at 30 month and 11 year follow up respectively. These cases represent the first report of a wandering spleen causing portal and mesenteric venous partial obstruction leading to varices; splenectomy resolved these findings post-operatively.

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