The clinical, histopathological, and electron microscopic features of an unusual case of xanthogranulomatous appendicitis are reported. The patient, a 37-year-old female, presented with typical signs of acute appendicitis and the appendix appeared slightly dilated at laparatomy. The histopathological sections showed numerous xanthoma cells mixed with inspissated fecaliths. Electron microscopy disclosed the presence of xanthoma cells filled with electron-lucent lipid droplets of variable size. The ultrastructural characteristics of these cells enabled the distinction of two types of lipid- laden histiocytes, in relationship to the size of the lipid droplets. Since the lipid droplets were seen also in cells other than histiocytes, it appears that these changes are secondary to a common mechanism, comprising factors such as obstruction, hemorrhage, inflammation, and local hypoxia.
- Electron microscopy
- Xanthogranulomatous inflammation
- Xanthoma cells