Medical Definition of Point, McBurney's

  • Medical Author:
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

Point, McBurney's: McBurney's point is the most tender area of the abdomen of patients in the early stage of appendicitis.

McBurney's point is named after the 19th-century New York surgeon Charles McBurney (1845-1913) who was the leading authority in his day on the diagnosis and treatment of appendicitis.

Dr. McBurney in 1889 showed that incipient appendicitis could be detected by applying pressure to a particular point in the right lower abdomen, an area he called the "seat of greatest pain."

Five years later, Dr. McBurney described the surgical incision he made in the right lower part of the abdomen to remove the inflamed appendix. This is now referred to as "McBurney's incision."

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Reviewed on 12/27/2018

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