Appendicitis – Learning More about the Condition and How It is Treated

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Appendicitis – Learning More about the Condition and How It is Treated

Appendicitis is described as the inflammation of the appendix. The appendix is the finger shaped pouch in your colon. This is located at the lower right side of the abdomen. According to experts, this part of the large intestine does not seem to have any specific purpose.

Appendicitis is considered a medical emergency, which requires prompt surgery to have this part of the colon removed. The condition causes pain in the lower right quadrant of the abdomen. However, in most people, the pain associated with the conditions begins at the navel area and then moves. As the condition worsens, the pain also becomes intense. Even though anyone can actually develop the condition, it commonly occurs in people between age 10 and 30.

What Causes Appendicitis?

This condition commonly occurs whenever your appendix becomes blocked. Blockage may be caused by stool, cancer, or a foreign body. Aside from these causes, blockage may also occur due to infection because the appendix will become inflamed as a response to any infection. Once the appendix becomes inflamed, swollen and filled with abscess, it must be treated promptly as it can rupture.

Signs and Symptoms of Appendicitis to Watch Out For

Like any other health conditions, appendicitis has a few classic symptoms. The classic symptoms of this condition include dull pain occurring near the navel or on the upper abdomen. The pain becomes sharp as it moves to right lower part of the abdomen. Pain is typically the first sign of the condition. Loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting, abdominal swelling, high grade fever and inability to pass gas are the other classic signs of this condition.

If you experience any of these symptoms, you should seek medical attention right away. Timely diagnosis as well as treatment of the condition is important. If you experience these symptoms, you should refrain from eating, drinking or taking pain medications, as this can cause the appendix to rupture.

Complications of the Condition

Appendicitis is associated with several serious complications. For instance, a ruptured appendicitis is considered a complication of the condition. When the appendix ruptures, the infection can spread to your abdominal organs. This condition is known as peritonitis. This complication is considered life threatening and requires immediate surgery to remove the appendix and clean the abdominal cavity.

Diagnosing Appendicitis

Diagnosing this condition can be tricky. The symptoms associated with this condition are frequently vague. Moreover, the symptoms are also similar to the symptoms of other conditions like urinary tract infection and gallbladder problems. However, evaluation test like abdominal examination is performed to determine the condition. Diagnostic tests like urine test may be indicated to rule out urinary tract infection. Ultrasound or CT scans may also be performed to view the appendix.

Treatment and Management of the Condition

Surgery is typically indicated to remove the appendix. This type of surgery is referred to as appendectomy. Surgery is considered immediately to avoid the possibility of a ruptured appendix. Before the surgery, preoperative preparations are made. Antibiotics are given to fight possible peritonitis. The surgery is performed under general anesthesia.

References:

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/appendicitis/basics/symptoms/con-20023582

https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000256.htm

http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Appendicitis/Pages/Introduction.aspx

http://www.medicinenet.com/appendicitis/article.htm

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