McBurney’s point: A point that lies one-third of the distance laterally on a line drawn from the umbilicus to the right anterior superior iliac spine.
Classically used as a guide to the location of the base of the appendix, determined by the pressure of a single digit.
Charles McBurney published a treatise on appendicitis in 1889, in which he described the exact point on the abdomen at which tenderness was maximal in cases of acute appendicitis. This point is now known as McBurney’s point.
“The seat of greatest pain, determined by the pressure of one finger, has been very exactly between an inch and a half and two two inches from the anterior spinous process of the ilium on a straight line drawn from that process to the umbilicus” – McBurney 1889
- Charles Heber McBurney (1845 – 1913)
- McBurney C. Experience with early operative interference in cases of disease of the vermiform appendix. New York Medical Journal, 1889, 50: 676-684.
- McBurney C. The Indications for Early Laparotomy in Appendicitis. Ann Surg. 1891 Apr; 13(4): 233–254. [PMC 1428594]
- McBurney C. The incision made in the abdominal wall in cases of appendicitis, with a description of a new method of operating. Ann Surg 1894:20:38–43 [PMC 1493708]
- Yale SH, Musana KA. Charles Heber McBurney (1845 – 1913). Clin Med Res. 2005 Aug; 3(3): 187–189. [PMC 1237161]
- Grover CA, Sternbach G. Charles McBurney: McBurney’s point. The Journal of emergency medicine. 42 (5): 578-81. [PMID 21982626]