Pediatric Crohn disease presenting as appendicitis: differentiating features from typical appendicitis.

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DOI: 10.1055/s-0032-1313348


BACKGROUND: The initial presentation of Crohn disease (CD) may mimic acute appendicitis, and preoperative clues may aid in recognizing patients at risk for CD.

METHODS: A retrospective case control study of patients presenting over 10 years compared control patients with appendicitis versus patients presenting with appendicitis who ultimately developed CD. We matched 10 patients of the same age, gender, and perforated versus nonperforated appendicitis status for each of the CD patients. Demographic, laboratory, and clinical data were compared. Additionally, appendectomy specimens of CD patients were genotyped for common NOD2 (nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain-containing protein 2) mutations.

RESULTS: Of 2718 patients treated for appendicitis, 8 subsequently developed CD. Compared to the matched controls, CD patients were found to have lower hemoglobin (10.4 + 1.0 vs. 13.3 + 0.2, p < 0.0001) and mean corpuscular volume (MCV) (72.5 + 3.4 vs. 84.1 + 0.5, p < 0.0001) values, and higher platelets values (444.8 + 42.2 vs. 275.6 + 8.0, p < 0.0001) at initial presentation. Anthropometric z-scores, length of stay, and antibiotic therapy duration did not significantly differ between groups. The NOD2 mutation frequency (25%) was consistent with the currently described CD population.

CONCLUSIONS: Preoperative findings of a low hemoglobin level and MCV count, and a high platelet count in a child presenting with appendicitis warrant further evaluation for CD, as prompt diagnosis allows for optimal treatment and quality of life for these patients.

Journal Title

European journal of pediatric surgery : official journal of Austrian Association of Pediatric Surgery ... [et al] = Zeitschrift fur Kinderchirurgie





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MeSH Keywords

Adolescent; Appendectomy; Appendicitis; Biomarkers; Case-Control Studies; Crohn Disease; Humans; Nod2 Signaling Adaptor Protein; Polymerase Chain Reaction; ROC Curve; Retrospective Studies

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