Approximately 1 in 13 people will experience appendicitis during their lifetime. This painful condition is very common, but fortunately, it is easily remedied. Low-risk appendectomies are performed hundreds of thousands of times a year with good results. Therefore, there is no need to panic if you experience severe abdominal pain.

Explain that appendicitis cases are basically just bad luck. David Bliss, MD, MBA;Associate Professor of pediatric surgery. There are few risk factors that can predict appendix rupture because it occurs essentially randomly. Your surgeon will tell you what to look out for and what to do if you suspect your appendix has ruptured.

“The big picture to understand is that this is a very common disease,” Bliss says. “Just under 10% of people walking around the world will develop appendicitis at some point in their lives.” When appendicitis develops, the associated bacteria often randomly block the lumen of the appendix after a bowel movement. Inflammation worsens over time. It will burst in about a day and a half to two days. The most important thing, Bliss says, is to seek help right away.

Appendicitis is an acute disease that can lead to gangrene and organ rupture/perforation. When a patient experiences gangrenous appendicitis, the appendix tissue becomes necrotic. A ruptured or perforated appendix means there is a hole in the organ. If the infection spreads throughout the abdomen, the patient’s symptoms worsen and the incidence of complications increases.

Know when to ask for help

“Many things resemble appendicitis, and appendicitis can have symptoms similar to other conditions,” Bliss explains. “So we use the patient’s history, tests, lab tests, and imaging studies, which really help us narrow down what we’re investigating.” Ultrasounds, CT scans, and MRIs all show that the patient’s appendix is ​​the problem. It is an image processing method used to determine whether the cause of

The main symptom to watch out for is abdominal pain. Classic symptoms occur in and around the center of the navel, commonly known as the belly button. The location of the patient’s pain is related to the tissue of the nerve to the appendix.

Pain is also present as the inflammation spreads from the appendix itself to the lower right area of ​​the abdomen and into the abdominal wall. When the organ ruptures, the pain spreads throughout the abdomen. Pain is often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, fever, and sometimes diarrhea.

When you feel localized and widespread pain in your abdomen, especially when combined with other symptoms, it can only mean one thing. That means going to the hospital. “The first step is to go to the emergency room, because they have a good time frame,” Bliss says.

Low-risk, high-benefit treatment

“Decades ago, we rushed in to take out the appendix as an emergency. What we’ve discovered over the last 15 years is that if you give a patient an antibiotic, no matter where they are in their timeline, It just stops the process,” Bliss said. Timely administration of antibiotics and intravenous resuscitation can reduce the situation from a full-blown emergency and prepare the patient for surgery.

“If you treat it with antibiotics alone, you can recover without any need for surgery,” Bliss continues. “This may be effective in so-called ‘uncomplicated appendicitis’ before it ruptures. However, this is not well established as half of patients will have appendicitis relapse within a few years. ” Since appendectomy is a very low-risk surgery, most people prefer to proceed with the surgery even in the uncomplicated stage.

Open appendectomy, which involves making a small incision in the lower right part of the abdomen, is now rarely performed. The standard surgery used to remove a perforated appendix is ​​a laparoscopic appendectomy.

During the procedure, a camera is inserted into the navel area. Doctors can easily remove the appendix by making several small incisions in the abdomen and using small surgical instruments. After that, the patient can recover very quickly. If the appendix has not yet ruptured, the recovery time is so short that the patient can go home the same day. If your appendix ruptures, you will usually need to be hospitalized for 2 to 5 days and need another round of antibiotics.

“The only problem we worry about after that is further infections and abscesses that can come back between five and 14 days after surgery,” says Bliss. “If the appendix does not rupture, the chance of infection is very low, about 3%. If it ruptures, the chance of infection increases to up to 15%.” Bacterial sepsis can occur as a complication of appendicitis and cause death. Cases where this is the case are extremely rare.

“Appendicitis is very common in children, but it can also occur in adults. It’s essentially the same disease in most cases, regardless of age,” explains Bliss. “Likewise, most cases can be performed essentially the same way regardless of age, even if the procedure is performed a little differently by different surgeons.”

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