APPENDICITIS

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Facts about Appendicitis

What is Appendicitis 

Appendicitis is nothing but an inflammation of a 3 ½ inch long tissue i.e. the appendix,which extends from the large intestine. No one knows what the appendix actually does. Appendicitis is manageable provided, you visit the physician at the appropriate time before things get worse.

Sometimes, the inflammation is very severe and the appendix can eventually burst, leaving behind infectious pus, in your abdominal cavity. This can invariably lead to a more serious inflammation namely the peritonitis and can be fatal in the worst circumstances.

A pus filled abscess can also be caused by the inflammation of the appendix.

Appendicitis Treatment

What causes Appendicitis?

Appendicitis often occurs when the lumen of the appendix is blocked by a foreign body, stools or tumour. Blockage can also occur from any other infection in the abdominal cavity, which causes enlargement of lymphoid tissues.

Symptoms of Appendicitis

  • Dull pain near the naval area or the upper abdomen. The pain usually becomes very sharp, towards your right lower quadrant of your abdomen.
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Mild temperature of 99 degree Fahrenheit, which can run up to 102
  • Painful urination
  • Constipation/ Diarrhea

Diagnosis

A diagnosis of appendicitis is mainly clinical and proper history from you and thorough clinical examination will help your physician reach a diagnosis. Sometimes it’s a tricky affair. The symptoms, as stated above, can be similar to that of a gall bladder infection or urinary tract infection or that of an intestinal disorder and in females may mimic ovarian problems However, you may have to perform these tests, in order to diagnose appendicitis

  1. Abdominal exam, to detect the degree of inflammation.
  2. Rectal examination
  3. Blood test – May show increase in WBC count, and CRP.
  4. Urine test, to rule out urinary tract infection
  5. And a CT or an ultrasound scan - Severe appendicitis with localized abscess formation will be visualized on an ultrasound or CT scan

Treatment

As far as appendicitis is concerned, surgery is the treatment to remove the appendix. You cannot afford to have the inflamed appendix get ruptured, which can lead to serious consequences.

  • In straight forward appendicitis diagnosed early, the appendix needs to be removed by laparoscopy(key-hole surgery).
  • In case of a pus filled abscess in the area of appendix, usually a procedure to drain out the abscess is carried out followed by removal of the appendix later.

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