Should the appendix always be removed during surgery for mucinous ovarian tumors?

Bijal M. Patel, Ava D. Desai, Shilpa M. Patel, Meeta H. Mankad, Pariseema S. Dave, Chetana D. Parekh, Amisha J. Gami


Background: Appendectomy is performed in all mucinous ovarian tumors (MOT) identified intraoperatively to ensure microscopic metastases from appendix are not missed. Several recent studies suggested that appendectomy should only be performed in cases with a grossly abnormal appendix or with evidence of pseudomyxoma peritonei. Our study aimed to determine the frequency of malignancy in a grossly normal appendix in women undergoing surgery for borderline or malignant MOT.

Methods: In a single institution retrospective study, women undergoing surgery for MOT from January 1, 2008 to June 30, 2016 were included. Women with benign MOT, those with a history of either prior appendicectomy or prior gastrointestinal (GI) malignancy were excluded.

Results: Of 266 women identified with MOT, 153 with borderline and malignant MOT were included in the study after application of inclusion criteria. The study population comprised of 29 (18.95%) borderline and 124 (81.05%) malignant MOT. Among the borderline MOT, 13/29 had undergone appendectomy. Five (38.46%) had grossly abnormal appendices of whom 1 had mucinous cystadenoma, 3 had borderline mucinous tumor and 1 had mucinous cystadenocarcinoma of the appendix. Histology was normal in all 8 (61.54%) grossly normal appendices. Among the malignant MOT, 80/124 (64.52%) underwent appendicectomy. Nineteen (23.46%) had grossly abnormal appendices and histology was suggestive of adenocarcinoma of appendix. Histology was normal in all 62 (76.54%) macroscopically normal appendices.

Conclusions: Present results suggest that appendectomy be performed only for those appendices that are grossly abnormal or associated with pseudomyxoma peritonei at surgery for MOT


Appendix, Borderline tumors, Malignancy, Mucinous, Ovarian tumors, Pseudomyxoma peritonei

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