Computed tomography to operating room in less than 3 hours minimizes complications from appendicitis

Laura A. Harmon, Matthew L. Davis, Daniel C. Jupiter, Richard C. Frazee, Justin L. Regner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background The aim of our study is to select patients with nonperforated appendicitis verified by computed tomography (CT) scan and to determine if there is a temporal component to perforation. Methods A retrospective cohort study of patients with CT scan evidence of nonperforated appendicitis from 2007 to 2012. Results 411 patients, aged 39.7 ± 16.25 years (47.5% male) were included in the study. 330 patients (80.3%) were nonperforated at surgery. Analysis of 3-hour intervals from CT scan to operating room (OR) revealed an absolute reduction in the rate of perforation from 27% at the 6- to 9-hour interval, to 17% and 10% at the 3- to 6-hour and 0- to 3-hour intervals, respectively, (P <.04). All organ space infections occurred in patients who were delayed to the OR greater than 3 hours. Mean length of hospitalization was.93 days and 2.81 days, respectively, in nonperforated and perforated appendicitis patients (P <.001). Conclusions Delays to the OR were associated with increased risk of perforation. Patients with uncomplicated appendicitis had shorter hospitalization and fewer postoperative wound infections.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)246-250
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 1 2016


  • Appendicitis
  • CT scan
  • Complications
  • Timing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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