, Volume 15, Issue 1 Supplement, pp 67-69
Date: 02 Sep 2011

Gossypiboma presenting as mesosigmoid abscess: an experimental study

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The term “gossypiboma” is used to describe any mass of non-absorbable surgical material. It is estimated that this complication appears every 1.000–10.000 procedures. It may lead to peritonitis, acute abdominal pain, intraperitoneal abscess, bowel obstruction, or perforation.

Report of a case

We present the case of an 80-year-old female patient admitted for chronic abdominal pain and fever. A CT scan and MRI were performed with a probable diagnosis of carcinoma or pelvic abscess. A surgical history of hysterectomy and repair of abdominal wall hernia with a mesh were mentioned.


Exploratory laparotomy revealed the presence of an irregular, soft mass with characteristics of an abscess located into the mesosigmoid. Hartman’s sigmoidectomy was performed, and the patient’s postoperative course was uneventful. The histopathological examination confirmed the diagnosis of gossypiboma.


Retained foreign intraperitoneal materials often represent diagnostic dilemmas, since symptomatology is no specific and the time elapsed from surgery is long. The policy of prevention’s importance is highly appreciated.

An erratum to this article can be found at http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10151-011-0766-5