Medline: 7795991

British Journal of Surgery 82(3): 299-306, 1995.

Neoplastic lesions of the appendix.

Deans GT, Spence RA


Neoplasms occur in 0.5 per cent of appendices. Ultrasonography or computed tomography is beneficial, but preoperative detection is rare. At operation, the diagnosis is considered in under half of cases. Mucocele, localized pseudomyxoma peritonei, benign tumours and most appendiceal carcinoids are cured by appendicectomy alone. Right hemicolectomy is indicated for: (1) invasive adenocarcinoma; (2) tumours close to the caecum; (3) lesions larger than 2 cm; (4) mucin production; (5) invasion of the lymphatics, serosa or mesoappendix; and (6) cellular pleomorphism with a high mitotic rate. Tumours of 1-2 cm, small mucinous carcinoids, adenocarcinoma confined to the mucosa, and tumours in children may be treated by appendicectomy alone at the surgeon's discretion. The 5-year survival rate associated with classical carcinoid is more than 90 per cent. The prognosis of mucinous carcinoid is intermediate between that of classical carcinoid and well differentiated adenocarcinoma. The prognosis of adenocarcinoma is determined by Dukes' stage and is similar, stage for stage, to that of colorectal carcinoma.

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