Right Lower Quadrant Abdominal Pain: Do Not Forget About Ovarian Torsion on the Computed Tomography Scan

William Shyy, Roneesha S Knight, Nathan A Teismann
Journal of Emergency Medicine 2018, 55 (2): e43-e45

BACKGROUND: Abdominal pain is one of the most common chief complaints of patients presenting to emergency departments, and emergency physicians (EPs) often evaluate patients with right lower quadrant abdominal pain. Ovarian torsion is a rare cause of abdominal pain, but early diagnosis is essential for salvage of the affected ovary. The diagnostic study of choice for ovarian torsion is a pelvic ultrasound with color Doppler, but it is important for EPs and radiologists to be aware of findings of ovarian torsion that might appear on computed tomography (CT).

CASE REPORT: We present a case of a young female with right lower quadrant abdominal pain with CT evidence of ovarian torsion that was not recognized; the patient was discharged and then called back when the study was over-read as concerning for ovarian torsion. WHY SHOULD AN EMERGENCY PHYSICIAN BE AWARE OF THIS?: The presence of radiographic findings associated with ovarian torsion on a CT scan should encourage an EP to order a pelvic ultrasound with color Doppler (if available) and obtain an obstetrics/gynecology consult.

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