Turkish Journal of Surgery

Turkish Journal of Surgery

ISSN: 2564-6850
e-ISSN: 2564-7032


Osama Elfaedy1, Mohamed Benkhadoura2, Akrem Elshaikhy3, Khaled Elgazwi3

1Department of General Surgery, St. Luke’s Hospital, Kilkenny, Ireland
2Department of General Surgery, Benghazi Medical Center, Benghazi University, Benghazi, Libya
3Department of General Surgery, Al-jala Hospital, Benghazi University, Benghazi, Libya


Objective: For a suspected diagnosis of acute appendicitis, appendectomy is one of the most common emergency abdominal operations performed. However, the need for routine histopathological examination (HPE) of all appendectomy specimens has recently been questioned. The aim of this study was to assess whether a routine HPE of appendectomy specimens is needed and whether routine HPE has an impact on further management of patients.

Material and Methods: From January 2009 to June 2017, all histopathology reports of 4012 consecutive appendectomy specimens for a clinical suspicion of acute appendicitis were retrospectively analyzed in two university hospitals.

Results: Out of the 4012 cases, 3530 (88%) patients showed findings consistent with acute appendicitis on HPE. Perforation rate was 5.8% and was significantly higher in male patients (p< 0.001) and higher in the > 30 years age group (p= 0.024). Negative appendectomy rate was 5.6% and was significantly higher in female patients (p< 0.001). There were 256 (6.4%) patients who demonstrated unusual findings in their HPE, which included chronic appendicitis (n= 207; 5.2%) patients, Enterobius vermicularis (n= 14), Schistosoma (n= 8), Crohn’s disease (n= 1), neuroma (n= 10), carcinoid tumour (n= 5) and mucinous cystadenoma (n= 5), mucocele (n= 4) and mucinous cystadenocarcinoma (n= 2).

Conclusion: HPE of the appendix does not only confirm the diagnosis of acute appendicitis, but also detects other unusual diagnoses that may have an impact on a patient’s management. A number of patients with unusual histopathological findings require anti-helmentic treatment, colectomy, gastroenterology follow-up or periodic surveillance. Hence, all appendectomy specimens must be submitted for routine HPE.

Keywords: Appendectomy, appendicitis, histopathological examination

Cite this article as: Elfaedy O, Benkhadoura M, Elshaikhy A, Elgazwi K. Impact of routine histopathological examination of appendectomy specimens on patient management: a study of 4012 appendectomy specimens. Turk J Surg 2019; 35 (3): 196-201.


Ethics Committee Approval

: Authors declared that the research was conducted according to the principles of the World Medical Association Declaration of Helsinki “Ethical Principles for Medical Research Involving Human Subjects”, (amended in October 2013).

Peer Review

Externally peer-reviewed.

Author Contributions

Consept - O.E., M.B.; Design - O.E., A.E., K.E.; Supervision - O.E., K.E.; Resource - O.E., M.B., K.E.; Materials - M.B., A.E.; Data Collection and/or Processing - M.B., A.E.; Analysis and Interpretation - O.E., M.B., K.E.; Literature Search - O.E., K.E.; Writing Manuscript - O.E., M.B., K.E.; Critical Reviews - All of authors.

Conflict of Interest

No conflict of interest was declared by the authors.

Financial Disclosure

The authors declared that this study has received no financial support.


The authors would like to thank Essam S. Hussein, head of data management at Benghazi medical centre, for help with statistical analysis.