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Asplenia

The spleen Spleen The spleen is the largest lymphoid organ in the body, located in the LUQ of the abdomen, superior to the left kidney and posterior to the stomach at the level of the 9th-11th ribs just below the diaphragm. The spleen is highly vascular and acts as an important blood filter, cleansing the blood of pathogens and damaged erythrocytes. Spleen: Anatomy plays a crucial role in immune function, blood filtration, and platelet storage. Asplenia is the absence of splenic tissue or function and can stem from several factors ranging from congenital Congenital Chorioretinitis to iatrogenic Iatrogenic Any adverse condition in a patient occurring as the result of treatment by a physician, surgeon, or other health professional, especially infections acquired by a patient during the course of treatment. Anterior Cord Syndrome. There is a distinction between anatomic asplenia, which is due to the surgical removal of the spleen Spleen The spleen is the largest lymphoid organ in the body, located in the LUQ of the abdomen, superior to the left kidney and posterior to the stomach at the level of the 9th-11th ribs just below the diaphragm. The spleen is highly vascular and acts as an important blood filter, cleansing the blood of pathogens and damaged erythrocytes. Spleen: Anatomy, and functional asplenia, which is due to a condition that leads to splenic atrophy Atrophy Decrease in the size of a cell, tissue, organ, or multiple organs, associated with a variety of pathological conditions such as abnormal cellular changes, ischemia, malnutrition, or hormonal changes. Cellular Adaptation, infarct Infarct Area of necrotic cells in an organ, arising mainly from hypoxia and ischemia Ischemic Cell Damage, congestion, or infiltrative disease. Howell-Jolly bodies are commonly seen on peripheral blood smear Peripheral Blood Smear Anemia: Overview and Types. Abdominal imaging and scintigraphy Scintigraphy Sjögren’s Syndrome are used for diagnosis. High risk of sepsis Sepsis Systemic inflammatory response syndrome with a proven or suspected infectious etiology. When sepsis is associated with organ dysfunction distant from the site of infection, it is called severe sepsis. When sepsis is accompanied by hypotension despite adequate fluid infusion, it is called septic shock. Sepsis and Septic Shock caused by encapsulated Encapsulated Klebsiella bacteria Bacteria Bacteria are prokaryotic single-celled microorganisms that are metabolically active and divide by binary fission. Some of these organisms play a significant role in the pathogenesis of diseases. Bacteriology requires adherence to a strict vaccination Vaccination Vaccination is the administration of a substance to induce the immune system to develop protection against a disease. Unlike passive immunization, which involves the administration of pre-performed antibodies, active immunization constitutes the administration of a vaccine to stimulate the body to produce its own antibodies. Vaccination schedule and early antibiotic treatment when an infection is suspected. Thromboembolic events are common.

Last updated: Sep 7, 2021

Editorial responsibility: Stanley Oiseth, Lindsay Jones, Evelin Maza

Overview

Definition

The spleen Spleen The spleen is the largest lymphoid organ in the body, located in the LUQ of the abdomen, superior to the left kidney and posterior to the stomach at the level of the 9th-11th ribs just below the diaphragm. The spleen is highly vascular and acts as an important blood filter, cleansing the blood of pathogens and damaged erythrocytes. Spleen: Anatomy is one of the secondary lymphatic organs Secondary lymphatic organs The secondary lymphoid organs, also called peripheral lymphoid/lymphatic organs, include MALT, the lymph nodes, and the spleen. These collections of lymphoid tissues provide constant surveillance for pathogens. In their distinct sites, these tissues are filled with immune cells ready to mount a response when antigens are detected. Secondary Lymphatic Organs central to immune function that plays a role in filtering the blood and removing old or damaged erythrocytes Erythrocytes Erythrocytes, or red blood cells (RBCs), are the most abundant cells in the blood. While erythrocytes in the fetus are initially produced in the yolk sac then the liver, the bone marrow eventually becomes the main site of production. Erythrocytes: Histology. Asplenia is defined as the lack of a spleen Spleen The spleen is the largest lymphoid organ in the body, located in the LUQ of the abdomen, superior to the left kidney and posterior to the stomach at the level of the 9th-11th ribs just below the diaphragm. The spleen is highly vascular and acts as an important blood filter, cleansing the blood of pathogens and damaged erythrocytes. Spleen: Anatomy or splenic function.

Etiology

Epidemiology

Epidemiology differs based on etiology.

  • Congenital Congenital Chorioretinitis:
    • Rare
    • Syndromic asplenia is predominant in men.
    • Celiac disease Celiac disease Celiac disease (also known as celiac sprue or gluten enteropathy) is an autoimmune reaction to gliadin, which is a component of gluten. Celiac disease is closely associated with HLA-DQ2 and HLA-DQ8. The immune response is localized to the proximal small intestine and causes the characteristic histologic findings of villous atrophy, crypt hyperplasia, and intraepithelial lymphocytosis. Celiac Disease, Whipple procedure, and alcoholic Alcoholic Persons who have a history of physical or psychological dependence on ethanol. Mallory-Weiss Syndrome (Mallory-Weiss Tear) liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy disease are strongly associated with partial splenic disfunction.
  • Functional asplenia: Nearly all patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship with sickle cell disease Sickle cell disease Sickle cell disease (SCD) is a group of genetic disorders in which an abnormal Hb molecule (HbS) transforms RBCs into sickle-shaped cells, resulting in chronic anemia, vasoocclusive episodes, pain, and organ damage. Sickle Cell Disease (and other hemoglobinopathies Hemoglobinopathies A group of inherited disorders characterized by structural alterations within the hemoglobin molecule. Anemia: Overview and Types) will suffer from functional asplenia.
  • Acquired: The incidence Incidence The number of new cases of a given disease during a given period in a specified population. It also is used for the rate at which new events occur in a defined population. It is differentiated from prevalence, which refers to all cases in the population at a given time. Measures of Disease Frequency of surgical splenectomy Splenectomy Surgical procedure involving either partial or entire removal of the spleen. Rupture of the Spleen is decreasing because of new surgical techniques.

Pathophysiology

  • Functional asplenia typically begins with hyposplenism:
    • Entrapment of RBCs RBCs Erythrocytes, or red blood cells (RBCs), are the most abundant cells in the blood. While erythrocytes in the fetus are initially produced in the yolk sac then the liver, the bone marrow eventually becomes the main site of production. Erythrocytes: Histology 
    • Infarction
    • Hyposplenism
    • Autosplenectomy
  • Lack of a filtration function for bacteria Bacteria Bacteria are prokaryotic single-celled microorganisms that are metabolically active and divide by binary fission. Some of these organisms play a significant role in the pathogenesis of diseases. Bacteriology: increased risk of sepsis Sepsis Systemic inflammatory response syndrome with a proven or suspected infectious etiology. When sepsis is associated with organ dysfunction distant from the site of infection, it is called severe sepsis. When sepsis is accompanied by hypotension despite adequate fluid infusion, it is called septic shock. Sepsis and Septic Shock due to encapsulated Encapsulated Klebsiella bacteria Bacteria Bacteria are prokaryotic single-celled microorganisms that are metabolically active and divide by binary fission. Some of these organisms play a significant role in the pathogenesis of diseases. Bacteriology
    • Haemophilus influenzae Haemophilus Influenzae A species of Haemophilus found on the mucous membranes of humans and a variety of animals. The species is further divided into biotypes I through viii. Haemophilus
    • Streptococcus Streptococcus Streptococcus is one of the two medically important genera of gram-positive cocci, the other being Staphylococcus. Streptococci are identified as different species on blood agar on the basis of their hemolytic pattern and sensitivity to optochin and bacitracin. There are many pathogenic species of streptococci, including S. pyogenes, S. agalactiae, S. pneumoniae, and the viridans streptococci. Streptococcus pneumoniae
    • Neisseria meningitidis Neisseria meningitidis A species of gram-negative, aerobic bacteria. It is a commensal and pathogen only of humans, and can be carried asymptomatically in the nasopharynx. When found in cerebrospinal fluid it is the causative agent of cerebrospinal meningitis. It is also found in venereal discharges and blood. There are at least 13 serogroups based on antigenic differences in the capsular polysaccharides; the ones causing most meningitis infections being a, b, c, y, and w-135. Each serogroup can be further classified by serotype, serosubtype, and immunotype. Neisseria
    • Escherichia coli Escherichia coli The gram-negative bacterium Escherichia coli is a key component of the human gut microbiota. Most strains of E. coli are avirulent, but occasionally they escape the GI tract, infecting the urinary tract and other sites. Less common strains of E. coli are able to cause disease within the GI tract, most commonly presenting as abdominal pain and diarrhea. Escherichia coli
    • Klebsiella Klebsiella Klebsiella are encapsulated gram-negative, lactose-fermenting bacilli. They form pink colonies on MacConkey agar due to lactose fermentation. The main virulence factor is a polysaccharide capsule. Klebsiella pneumoniae is the most important pathogenic species. Klebsiella
  • Increased risk of vascular events:
    • Secondary to thrombocytosis
    • Increased circulation Circulation The movement of the blood as it is pumped through the cardiovascular system. ABCDE Assessment of damaged erythrocytes Erythrocytes Erythrocytes, or red blood cells (RBCs), are the most abundant cells in the blood. While erythrocytes in the fetus are initially produced in the yolk sac then the liver, the bone marrow eventually becomes the main site of production. Erythrocytes: Histology
Table: Causes of asplenia by category
Category Disease/condition
Congenital Congenital Chorioretinitis
  • Heterotaxy syndrome
  • Ivemark syndrome
Iatrogenic Iatrogenic Any adverse condition in a patient occurring as the result of treatment by a physician, surgeon, or other health professional, especially infections acquired by a patient during the course of treatment. Anterior Cord Syndrome
Circulatory
  • Splenic artery/vein thrombosis Thrombosis Formation and development of a thrombus or blood clot in the blood vessel. Epidemic Typhus
  • Celiac artery thrombosis Thrombosis Formation and development of a thrombus or blood clot in the blood vessel. Epidemic Typhus
Hematologic/oncologic
  • Sickle cell disease Sickle cell disease Sickle cell disease (SCD) is a group of genetic disorders in which an abnormal Hb molecule (HbS) transforms RBCs into sickle-shaped cells, resulting in chronic anemia, vasoocclusive episodes, pain, and organ damage. Sickle Cell Disease
  • Hereditary spherocytosis Hereditary Spherocytosis Hereditary spherocytosis (HS) is the most common type of hereditary hemolytic anemia. The condition is caused by a cytoskeletal protein deficiency in the RBC membrane. This results in loss of membrane stability and deformability of the RBC, giving the cell its spherical shape (spherocyte). Hereditary Spherocytosis
  • Myeloproliferative disorders
  • Graft Graft A piece of living tissue that is surgically transplanted Organ Transplantation vs. host disease
  • Malignancy Malignancy Hemothorax (leukemia, lymphoma Lymphoma A general term for various neoplastic diseases of the lymphoid tissue. Imaging of the Mediastinum, metastases)
Hepatic
  • Alcoholic Alcoholic Persons who have a history of physical or psychological dependence on ethanol. Mallory-Weiss Syndrome (Mallory-Weiss Tear) liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy disease/ cirrhosis Cirrhosis Cirrhosis is a late stage of hepatic parenchymal necrosis and scarring (fibrosis) most commonly due to hepatitis C infection and alcoholic liver disease. Patients may present with jaundice, ascites, and hepatosplenomegaly. Cirrhosis can also cause complications such as hepatic encephalopathy, portal hypertension, portal vein thrombosis, and hepatorenal syndrome. Cirrhosis
  • Chronic hepatitis
  • Portal hypertension Hypertension Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a common disease that manifests as elevated systemic arterial pressures. Hypertension is most often asymptomatic and is found incidentally as part of a routine physical examination or during triage for an unrelated medical encounter. Hypertension
Autoimmune
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus Systemic lupus erythematosus Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a chronic autoimmune, inflammatory condition that causes immune-complex deposition in organs, resulting in systemic manifestations. Women, particularly those of African American descent, are more commonly affected. Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
  • Thyroiditis Thyroiditis Thyroiditis is a catchall term used to describe a variety of conditions that have inflammation of the thyroid gland in common. It includes pathologies that cause an acute illness with severe thyroid pain (e.g., subacute thyroiditis and infectious thyroiditis) as well as conditions in which there is no clinically evident inflammation and the manifestations primarily reflect thyroid dysfunction or a goiter (e.g., painless thyroiditis and fibrous Riedel’s thyroiditis). Thyroiditis
  • Sarcoidosis Sarcoidosis Sarcoidosis is a multisystem inflammatory disease that causes noncaseating granulomas. The exact etiology is unknown. Sarcoidosis usually affects the lungs and thoracic lymph nodes, but it can also affect almost every system in the body, including the skin, heart, and eyes, most commonly. Sarcoidosis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis Arthritis Acute or chronic inflammation of joints. Osteoarthritis
GI
  • Celiac disease Celiac disease Celiac disease (also known as celiac sprue or gluten enteropathy) is an autoimmune reaction to gliadin, which is a component of gluten. Celiac disease is closely associated with HLA-DQ2 and HLA-DQ8. The immune response is localized to the proximal small intestine and causes the characteristic histologic findings of villous atrophy, crypt hyperplasia, and intraepithelial lymphocytosis. Celiac Disease
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Whipple’s disease
Infectious Infectious Febrile Infant
  • AIDS AIDS Chronic HIV infection and depletion of CD4 cells eventually results in acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), which can be diagnosed by the presence of certain opportunistic diseases called AIDS-defining conditions. These conditions include a wide spectrum of bacterial, viral, fungal, and parasitic infections as well as several malignancies and generalized conditions. HIV Infection and AIDS
  • Malaria Malaria Malaria is an infectious parasitic disease affecting humans and other animals. Most commonly transmitted via the bite of a female Anopheles mosquito infected with microorganisms of the Plasmodium genus. Patients present with fever, chills, myalgia, headache, and diaphoresis. Plasmodium/Malaria
  • Bacterial infections Infections Invasion of the host organism by microorganisms or their toxins or by parasites that can cause pathological conditions or diseases. Chronic Granulomatous Disease by Pneumococcus, Haemophilus influenzae Haemophilus Influenzae A species of Haemophilus found on the mucous membranes of humans and a variety of animals. The species is further divided into biotypes I through viii. Haemophilus, Neisseria Neisseria Neisseria is a genus of bacteria commonly present on mucosal surfaces. Several species exist, but only 2 are pathogenic to humans: N. gonorrhoeae and N. meningitidis. Neisseria species are non-motile, gram-negative diplococci most commonly isolated on modified Thayer-Martin (MTM) agar. Neisseria
Stage iv splenic injury

Stage IV splenic injury in a 34-year-old patient

Image: “Stage IV Splenic injury in a 34 Year Old Patient” by Eskandarlou, M., Derakhshanfar, A. License: CC BY 3.0

Diagnosis

  • History and physical:
    • History of a predisposing syndrome, condition, or trauma
    • Surgical history
  • Laboratory testing:
    • Peripheral blood smear Peripheral Blood Smear Anemia: Overview and Types:
      • Howell-Jolly bodies pathognomonic
      • Heinz bodies, target cells, pitted erythrocytes Erythrocytes Erythrocytes, or red blood cells (RBCs), are the most abundant cells in the blood. While erythrocytes in the fetus are initially produced in the yolk sac then the liver, the bone marrow eventually becomes the main site of production. Erythrocytes: Histology common
    • CBC:
      • Neutrophilia
      • Thrombocytosis
  • Diagnostic imaging:

Management

Management depends on the underlying cause, degree of asplenia, and age. Patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship > 5 years of age have a better prognosis Prognosis A prediction of the probable outcome of a disease based on a individual’s condition and the usual course of the disease as seen in similar situations. Non-Hodgkin Lymphomas. Prevention of infection is the cornerstone of long-term care because of the increased risk of rapidly progressing septicemia that is fatal in 50% of patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship.

Infection control

  • Routine vaccination Vaccination Vaccination is the administration of a substance to induce the immune system to develop protection against a disease. Unlike passive immunization, which involves the administration of pre-performed antibodies, active immunization constitutes the administration of a vaccine to stimulate the body to produce its own antibodies. Vaccination:
    • Pneumococcal 
    • Meningococcal
    • H. influenzae H. influenzae A species of Haemophilus found on the mucous membranes of humans and a variety of animals. The species is further divided into biotypes I through VIII. Haemophilus (type B)
    • Influenza Influenza Influenza viruses are members of the Orthomyxoviridae family and the causative organisms of influenza, a highly contagious febrile respiratory disease. There are 3 primary influenza viruses (A, B, and C) and various subtypes, which are classified based on their virulent surface antigens, hemagglutinin (HA) and neuraminidase (NA). Influenza typically presents with a fever, myalgia, headache, and symptoms of an upper respiratory infection. Influenza Viruses/Influenza
  • Antibiotic prophylaxis Antibiotic prophylaxis Use of antibiotics before, during, or after a diagnostic, therapeutic, or surgical procedure to prevent infectious complications. Surgical Infections:
    • For 1–2 years after splenectomy Splenectomy Surgical procedure involving either partial or entire removal of the spleen. Rupture of the Spleen
    • Up to 5 years of age
    • Surgical procedures that may predispose to infection by encapsulated Encapsulated Klebsiella bacteria Bacteria Bacteria are prokaryotic single-celled microorganisms that are metabolically active and divide by binary fission. Some of these organisms play a significant role in the pathogenesis of diseases. Bacteriology
    • Lifetime, if history of post-splenectomy sepsis Sepsis Systemic inflammatory response syndrome with a proven or suspected infectious etiology. When sepsis is associated with organ dysfunction distant from the site of infection, it is called severe sepsis. When sepsis is accompanied by hypotension despite adequate fluid infusion, it is called septic shock. Sepsis and Septic Shock
  • Empiric antibiotic treatment: indicated early when a patient presents with fever Fever Fever is defined as a measured body temperature of at least 38°C (100.4°F). Fever is caused by circulating endogenous and/or exogenous pyrogens that increase levels of prostaglandin E2 in the hypothalamus. Fever is commonly associated with chills, rigors, sweating, and flushing of the skin. Fever or other signs of infection

Overwhelming post-splenectomy infection (OPSI)

Rapid-onset septicemia:

  • Infection without definitive source accompanied by DIC DIC Disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC) is a condition characterized by systemic bodywide activation of the coagulation cascade. This cascade results in both widespread microvascular thrombi contributing to multiple organ dysfunction and consumption of clotting factors and platelets, leading to hemorrhage. Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation
  • Mortality Mortality All deaths reported in a given population. Measures of Health Status rate: 50%–70%
Management of fever in an asplenic patient

Management of an episode of fever Fever Fever is defined as a measured body temperature of at least 38°C (100.4°F). Fever is caused by circulating endogenous and/or exogenous pyrogens that increase levels of prostaglandin E2 in the hypothalamus. Fever is commonly associated with chills, rigors, sweating, and flushing of the skin. Fever in an asplenic patient

Image by Lecturio. License: CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

Clinical Relevance

  • Blunt abdominal trauma and penetrating abdominal injury Penetrating abdominal injury Penetrating abdominal injuries are created by an object puncturing the abdominal wall. Injuries can be high velocity, like gunshot wounds, or low velocity, like stab wounds. Different structures can be injured, including the duodenum, spleen, liver, kidneys, and pelvic organs. Penetrating Abdominal Injury: Abdominal injuries are classified as blunt or penetrating, according to the mechanism of injury. Different structures including the duodenum Duodenum The shortest and widest portion of the small intestine adjacent to the pylorus of the stomach. It is named for having the length equal to about the width of 12 fingers. Small Intestine: Anatomy, spleen Spleen The spleen is the largest lymphoid organ in the body, located in the LUQ of the abdomen, superior to the left kidney and posterior to the stomach at the level of the 9th-11th ribs just below the diaphragm. The spleen is highly vascular and acts as an important blood filter, cleansing the blood of pathogens and damaged erythrocytes. Spleen: Anatomy, liver Liver The liver is the largest gland in the human body. The liver is found in the superior right quadrant of the abdomen and weighs approximately 1.5 kilograms. Its main functions are detoxification, metabolism, nutrient storage (e.g., iron and vitamins), synthesis of coagulation factors, formation of bile, filtration, and storage of blood. Liver: Anatomy, kidneys Kidneys The kidneys are a pair of bean-shaped organs located retroperitoneally against the posterior wall of the abdomen on either side of the spine. As part of the urinary tract, the kidneys are responsible for blood filtration and excretion of water-soluble waste in the urine. Kidneys: Anatomy, and pelvic organs can be injured. In severe splenic injury, a splenectomy Splenectomy Surgical procedure involving either partial or entire removal of the spleen. Rupture of the Spleen may have to be performed to remove the spleen Spleen The spleen is the largest lymphoid organ in the body, located in the LUQ of the abdomen, superior to the left kidney and posterior to the stomach at the level of the 9th-11th ribs just below the diaphragm. The spleen is highly vascular and acts as an important blood filter, cleansing the blood of pathogens and damaged erythrocytes. Spleen: Anatomy.
  • Mononucleosis Mononucleosis Infectious mononucleosis (IM), also known as “the kissing disease,” is a highly contagious viral infection caused by the Epstein-Barr virus. Its common name is derived from its main method of transmission: the spread of infected saliva via kissing. Clinical manifestations of IM include fever, tonsillar pharyngitis, and lymphadenopathy. Mononucleosis: also known as “ kissing disease Kissing disease Infectious mononucleosis (IM), also known as “the kissing disease,” is a highly contagious viral infection caused by the Epstein-Barr virus. Its common name is derived from its main method of transmission: the spread of infected saliva via kissing. Clinical manifestations of im include fever, tonsillar pharyngitis, and lymphadenopathy. Mononucleosis,” or infectious Infectious Febrile Infant mononucleosis Mononucleosis Infectious mononucleosis (IM), also known as “the kissing disease,” is a highly contagious viral infection caused by the Epstein-Barr virus. Its common name is derived from its main method of transmission: the spread of infected saliva via kissing. Clinical manifestations of IM include fever, tonsillar pharyngitis, and lymphadenopathy. Mononucleosis. Mononucleosis Mononucleosis Infectious mononucleosis (IM), also known as “the kissing disease,” is a highly contagious viral infection caused by the Epstein-Barr virus. Its common name is derived from its main method of transmission: the spread of infected saliva via kissing. Clinical manifestations of IM include fever, tonsillar pharyngitis, and lymphadenopathy. Mononucleosis is a highly contagious viral infection caused by the EBV EBV Epstein-barr virus (EBV) is a linear, double-stranded DNA virus belonging to the herpesviridae family. This highly prevalent virus is mostly transmitted through contact with oropharyngeal secretions from an infected individual. The virus can infect epithelial cells and B lymphocytes, where it can undergo lytic replication or latency. Epstein-Barr Virus. The common name for mononucleosis Mononucleosis Infectious mononucleosis (IM), also known as “the kissing disease,” is a highly contagious viral infection caused by the Epstein-Barr virus. Its common name is derived from its main method of transmission: the spread of infected saliva via kissing. Clinical manifestations of IM include fever, tonsillar pharyngitis, and lymphadenopathy. Mononucleosis stems from its main method of transmission: the spread of infected saliva Saliva The clear, viscous fluid secreted by the salivary glands and mucous glands of the mouth. It contains mucins, water, organic salts, and ptyalin. Salivary Glands: Anatomy via kissing. During acute EBV EBV Epstein-barr virus (EBV) is a linear, double-stranded DNA virus belonging to the herpesviridae family. This highly prevalent virus is mostly transmitted through contact with oropharyngeal secretions from an infected individual. The virus can infect epithelial cells and B lymphocytes, where it can undergo lytic replication or latency. Epstein-Barr Virus infections Infections Invasion of the host organism by microorganisms or their toxins or by parasites that can cause pathological conditions or diseases. Chronic Granulomatous Disease, the spleen Spleen The spleen is the largest lymphoid organ in the body, located in the LUQ of the abdomen, superior to the left kidney and posterior to the stomach at the level of the 9th-11th ribs just below the diaphragm. The spleen is highly vascular and acts as an important blood filter, cleansing the blood of pathogens and damaged erythrocytes. Spleen: Anatomy can become enlarged and rupture either spontaneously (rare) or owing to its increased vulnerability to trauma.
  • Spleen Spleen The spleen is the largest lymphoid organ in the body, located in the LUQ of the abdomen, superior to the left kidney and posterior to the stomach at the level of the 9th-11th ribs just below the diaphragm. The spleen is highly vascular and acts as an important blood filter, cleansing the blood of pathogens and damaged erythrocytes. Spleen: Anatomy: a coffee-bean-shaped organ located in the left posterior upper abdomen (left hypochondriac region) and weighing about 150 grams. The spleen Spleen The spleen is the largest lymphoid organ in the body, located in the LUQ of the abdomen, superior to the left kidney and posterior to the stomach at the level of the 9th-11th ribs just below the diaphragm. The spleen is highly vascular and acts as an important blood filter, cleansing the blood of pathogens and damaged erythrocytes. Spleen: Anatomy is composed of very soft tissue Soft Tissue Soft Tissue Abscess that is filled with blood, which trickles through the parenchyma and filters out any old or abnormal RBCs RBCs Erythrocytes, or red blood cells (RBCs), are the most abundant cells in the blood. While erythrocytes in the fetus are initially produced in the yolk sac then the liver, the bone marrow eventually becomes the main site of production. Erythrocytes: Histology and WBCs. The spleen Spleen The spleen is the largest lymphoid organ in the body, located in the LUQ of the abdomen, superior to the left kidney and posterior to the stomach at the level of the 9th-11th ribs just below the diaphragm. The spleen is highly vascular and acts as an important blood filter, cleansing the blood of pathogens and damaged erythrocytes. Spleen: Anatomy also plays a role in immune function by removing pathogens and producing antibodies Antibodies Immunoglobulins (Igs), also known as antibodies, are glycoprotein molecules produced by plasma cells that act in immune responses by recognizing and binding particular antigens. The various Ig classes are IgG (the most abundant), IgM, IgE, IgD, and IgA, which differ in their biologic features, structure, target specificity, and distribution. Immunoglobulins: Types and Functions. Owing to its fragile nature and high vascularization, the spleen Spleen The spleen is the largest lymphoid organ in the body, located in the LUQ of the abdomen, superior to the left kidney and posterior to the stomach at the level of the 9th-11th ribs just below the diaphragm. The spleen is highly vascular and acts as an important blood filter, cleansing the blood of pathogens and damaged erythrocytes. Spleen: Anatomy can rupture easily during abdominal trauma, particularly when it is enlarged.
  • Splenomegaly Splenomegaly Splenomegaly is pathologic enlargement of the spleen that is attributable to numerous causes, including infections, hemoglobinopathies, infiltrative processes, and outflow obstruction of the portal vein. Splenomegaly: massive enlargement of the spleen Spleen The spleen is the largest lymphoid organ in the body, located in the LUQ of the abdomen, superior to the left kidney and posterior to the stomach at the level of the 9th-11th ribs just below the diaphragm. The spleen is highly vascular and acts as an important blood filter, cleansing the blood of pathogens and damaged erythrocytes. Spleen: Anatomy, rendering it palpable under the left costal arch. Ultrasounds show a bulging shape and rounding of the normally pointed ends. Any ectopic tissue, such as accessory spleens, will also be hypertrophied. Enlargement of the spleen Spleen The spleen is the largest lymphoid organ in the body, located in the LUQ of the abdomen, superior to the left kidney and posterior to the stomach at the level of the 9th-11th ribs just below the diaphragm. The spleen is highly vascular and acts as an important blood filter, cleansing the blood of pathogens and damaged erythrocytes. Spleen: Anatomy may occur for different reasons, including infection, internal hemorrhage, or sequestration of abnormal blood cells. Enlargement of the spleen Spleen The spleen is the largest lymphoid organ in the body, located in the LUQ of the abdomen, superior to the left kidney and posterior to the stomach at the level of the 9th-11th ribs just below the diaphragm. The spleen is highly vascular and acts as an important blood filter, cleansing the blood of pathogens and damaged erythrocytes. Spleen: Anatomy puts it at risk for rupture during trauma.

References

  1. Pulvirenti, F., et al. (2020). Chapter 48. In Sullivan, K., and Stiehm, R. (Ed.), Stiehm’s Immune Deficiencies Inborn Errors of Metabolism. 2nd ed. pp. 1012–1033. Retrieved April 12, 2021, from https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/immunology-and-microbiology/asplenia
  2. Quinti, I., Paganelli, R. (2014). Chapter 45. In Sullivan, K., and Stiehm, R. (Ed.), Stiehm’s Immune Deficiencies Inborn Errors of Metabolism. 1st ed. pp. 835–844. Retrieved April 12, 2021, from https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-405546-9.00045-5
  3. Litz, C.E. The post splenectomy blood picture. Retrieved April 16, 2021, from https://propath.com/the-post-splenectomy-blood-picture/
  4. Chen, M.J., Huang, M.J., et al. (2005). Ultrasonography of splenic abnormalities. World Journal of Gastroenterology. 11(26), 4061–4066. Retrieved April 16, 2021, from http://dx.doi.org/10.3748/wjg.v11.i26.4061
  5. Rubin, L., Schaffner, W. (2014). Care of the asplenic patient. New England Journal of Medicine. 371, 349–356. Retrieved April 16, 2021, from https://doi.org/10.1056/NEJMcp1314291

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