Accessory spleen torsion: a rare cause of acute abdominal pain


  • Madison Bowles Department of General Surgery, Gold Coast University Hospital, Queensland



Accessory spleen, Splenunculus, Splenunculi, Torted, Torsion, Abdominal pain


Accessory spleens, which are also known as a splenunculus or a splenule, are a benign developmental anomaly in which nodules of splenic tissue exist separate to the main body of the spleen. It is a reasonably common phenomenon which is present in approximately 10-30% of the population, however they only infrequently become symptomatic. Torsion of an accessory spleen is a rare cause of abdominal pain with few cases reported in the literature, most commonly in the paediatric population. Without treatment, torsion can lead to significant complications including haemorrhagic shock, peritonitis or rupture. The rarity portends a diagnostic challenge and thus a high index of suspicion is crucial for attaining a prompt diagnosis and timely management. This case gives an account of a 43-year-old female who presented with abdominal pain secondary to a torted accessory spleen. 


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