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Current Approach to the Diagnosis and Emergency Department Management of Appendicitis in Children

Lipsett, Susan C. MD; Bachur, Richard G. MD

doi: 10.1097/PEC.0000000000001049
CME Review Article

Concerns about radiation exposure have led to a decrease in the use of computed tomography in suspected appendicitis, with increased reliance on ultrasound. Children with suspected appendicitis should be risk stratified using a combination of clinical signs and symptoms, white blood cell count, and ultrasound in order to guide further evaluation and management. Magnetic resonance imaging is a promising imaging modality but remains costly. Ongoing research is evaluating the role of nonoperative management in children with confirmed appendicitis.

Staff Physician (Lipsett) and Chief (Bachur), Division of Emergency Medicine, Boston Children’s Hospital, Boston, MA.

The authors and staff in a position to control the content of this CME activity and their spouses/life partners (if any) have disclosed that they have no financial relationships with, or financial interest in, any commercial organizations pertaining to this educational activity.

Reprints: Susan C. Lipsett, MD, Division of Emergency Medicine, Boston Children’s Hospital, 300 Longwood Ave, Boston, MA 02115 (e-mail:

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