Appendicitis – A Frequent Digestive Disease

The appendix is an 8 cm long intestinal tissue extending from the Ilion. Its inflammation causes appendicitis. The exact function of the appendix is not known but we can easily have a normal life without it.

If not treated on time by surgical appendectomy, appendicitis can lead to perforation and spread the infection in the peritoneum, the abdominal lining. Unless quickly treated with strong antibiotics peritonitis can cause death by toxic shock.

An infection separated from the other parts of the body by a lining can form outside the appendix forming an abscess filled with pus. This situation is not so critical like appendicitis but cannot be detected throughout surgery. Because of that, all cases of appendicitis are considered emergencies and need surgical treatment.

Appendicitis commonly appears at the age of 10-30, rare under 2, but it can strike anytime.

Appendicitis is caused by an infection in the body, by cancer or by a foreign body blocking the connection with the intestines.

The most common classical symptoms for appendicitis are:

1. Pain in the superior abdomen or around the navel, moving downwards and right.

2. Lack of appetite

3. Nausea and vomiting states

4. Abdominal distension with stopping of the intestinal transit

5. Constipation or diarrhea

6. Abdominal cramps

7. Painful urination

8. Low fever in the beginning

Symptoms are never the same; they vary from person to person. You should call your physician right away if you have matching pains. Stop eating and drinking, do not take antacids, pain-killers or laxatives that may cause appendicle perforation.

Symptoms of appendicitis can be easily mixed up with the ones of urinary tract or bladder infections, ovary problems, gastritis, Crohn disease or intestinal infection. This is why diagnosing appendicitis is hard to do.

To establish a certain diagnosis of appendicitis a surgeon must examine the abdomen for inflammation, do urine tests, rectal exam, blood analysis, ultrasound or CT scan.

The treatment is surgical even when the doctors aren’t 100% sure because it can lead to other complications. Appendectomy is the removal of the appendix; if an abscess is found it needs to be drained and then the appendix can be removed.

Before surgery patients get antibiotics to fight against a possible peritonitis; if present the peritoneum must be drained and irrigated. Usually surgeons perform a topic anesthesia, only on complications a general one.

The appendix is removed classical through a 8 cm long incision or by laparoscopic way.

After 12 hours from the operation you can move around and in 2-3 weeks time your life comes back to normal.

Call your physician if after the intervention you have these symptoms: Pains, vomiting, fever, blood in urine or in your vomit, pains and redness of the incision, dizziness.

Appendicitis cannot be prevented; its appearance could also be inherited. Persons who eat more fruits and vegetables with high amounts of fiber are less susceptive to make appendicitis.



Source by Groshan Fabiola

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