Evaluation of conservative management in uncomplicated acute appendicitis

Vignesh M., Rajkumar Chejara, S. V Arya, Ankit Bhatia, Rohit Chaudhary, Monish Raj


Background: Appendectomy has been the treatment for acute appendicitis for years based on the understanding that acute appendicitis always leads to perforation and peritonitis. However, there is growing evidence that a significant proportion of patients can be successfully managed with conservative treatment without developing gangrene or perforation. Conservative treatment avoids discomfort, surgery-related morbidities and minimizes treatment cost.

Methods: 60 patients taken up for conservative management were evaluated and followed up for 6 months. Study patients received intravenous antibiotics for 2 days. Repeated clinical and TLC monitoring were done. In patients whose clinical condition did not improve, appendectomy was performed. Follow-up at 10 days, 30 days, 3 months and 6 months were carried out to assess recurrence in conservatively managed patients.

Results: In this study, the mean age was 25.65 years with a standard deviation of ±8.96 years. The incidence of uncomplicated appendicitis was 63.3% in males and 36.7% in females. Mean Alvarado score was 7.75 with a standard deviation of ±1.20. Failure of conservative management (conversion to appendectomy) was observed in 11.7% of patients and 4 patients (6.6%) had recurrence within 6 months. The overall treatment efficacy was 81.7%.

Conclusions: In many cases, first attack of uncomplicated acute appendicitis can be treated successfully by conservative management. Treatment failure on primary admission as well as short-term recurrence up to six months after conservative treatment is low and acceptable. Incidence of complications like perforation and abscess formation are also statistically low.


Appendicitis, Treatment failure, Recurrence, Appendectomy, Alvarado score

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