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Ann Afr Med. 2019 Jan-Mar;18(1):36-41. doi: 10.4103/aam.aam_11_18.

Acute perforated appendicitis in adults: Management and complications in Lagos, Nigeria.

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Department of Surgery, Faculty of Clinical Sciences, College of Medicine, General Surgery Unit, University of Lagos, Idi-Araba, Lagos, Nigeria.
Department of Surgery, Faculty of Clinical Sciences, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Idi-Araba, Lagos, Nigeria.


in English, French


Acute perforation of the appendix is one of the complications of appendicitis that is associated with increased morbidity and mortality and hence regarded as a surgical emergency. Risk factors for perforated appencidicits include extremes of age, male sex, pregnancy, immunosuppression, comorbid medical conditions and previous abdominal surgery.


This study focuses on the pattern of presentation, risk factors, morbidity and mortality of patients managed for perforated appendicitis in our centre.

Subjects and Methods:

We conducted a seven-year retrospective review of consecutive adult patients who had surgery for perforated appendicitis in our centre.


The perforation rate in the study was 28.5%. The peak age of presentation was between 21-30 years. Forty-two (71.1%) of the patients under study were males. Only 3 (5.1%) of the cohorts had history of recurrent abdominal pain. Majority of the patients were in the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) II (44.1%) and III (42.4%) categories. Surgical site infections (SSI) (18.6%), wound dehiscence (15.2%) and pelvic abscess (13.5%) were the most common complications. The Incidence of SSI was found to correlate with male gender, (P = 0.041), co-morbidity (P = 0.037) and ASA score (0.03) at 95% confidence interval. Routine use of intraperitoneal drain after surgery for perforated appendicitis did not appear to reduce the incidence of pelvic abscess. No mortality in the studied population.


Appendiceal perforation was more common in male patients with first episode of acute appendicitis. Previous abdominal surgery and comorbid medical conditions were of lesser risk factors for appendiceal perforation in our patients. Surgical site infection was the commonest complication after surgery.


Appendicitis; adults; complications; laparotomy; outcome; perforation

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