Appendix Operation

The Appendix is a 3.5inch-long tube of tissue that extends from the large intestine. The function of the appendix is not yet fully understood, though one can live without it with no consequences. Appendicitis is a medical emergency requiring prompt surgical removal of the appendix. The symptoms of appendicitis include dull pain near the navel or the upper abdomen that becomes sharp as it moves to the lower right abdomen. This is usually the first sign. The others symptoms are Loss of appetite, Nausea and/or vomiting soon after abdominal pain begins, Abdominal swelling, Fever of 99-102 degrees Fahrenheit, Inability to pass gas. Left untreated, an inflamed appendix will burst, or perforate, spilling infectious materials into the abdominal cavity leading to life-threatening situation. Surgery to remove the appendix is called an appendectomy is the standard treatment for appendicitis.

Steps taken:

Appendectomy may be performed as a minimally invasive surgery or as an open operation. Recovery time from the operation varies from person to person. Some may need three weeks before being completely active; for others it can be a matter of days.

To begin with the surgeon gives antibiotics before the surgery to counter possible infections leading to peritonitis. The surgery is performed under general anaesthesia. The appendix is removed through an approximate 4-inch incision or by laparoscopy. If patient already has peritonitis (infection) then the abdomen needs to be completely cleaned and irrigated to drain out the pus (debris of the infected and destroyed tissues). Patient recovers quickly and in day can move around. Normal activities can resume after 2-3 weeks.

Pain, uncontrolled vomiting, increased abdominal pain, dizziness/feelings of faintness, blood in vomit or urine, increased pain and redness at the incisions, fever and pus are reported complications of this procedure. Appropriate medications shall be given for the symptoms and the side-effects.

Advantages:

Appendix surgeries relieve patients from severe pain and are the most effective treatment interventions.

Precautions:

Appendectomy is a safe and effective measure to treated inflamed appendix. Patient should never neglect unusual abdominal pains and should consult doctor immediately. Like any other surgical procedure patient must clarify all the doubts and concerns with the surgeon. All the physiological parameters must be stable and within normal limits. The medical history, details of the concomitant medications must be shared with surgeon so that he can appropriately take into account any additional precautions that might be necessary. At all times, follow doctor’s advice. Patients are advised to take complete rest until full recovery before resuming normal activities.

FAQs

Does appendicitis affect only children?

It is common I children but it can occur at any age.

Are all right-sided lower abdominal pains are due to appendicitis?

No, right-sided abdominal pain isn't always due to appendicitis. Sometimes, there may be no reason for your abdominal pain and it may go away on its own. This is called non-specific abdominal pain (NSAP).

Is appendicitis preventable?

There is no known way to prevent appendicitis.

What are the Complications of appendicitis?

The most serious complication of appendicitis is an infection of the lining of the abdominal cavity (peritonitis). This may occur if appendix ruptures (perforates) and the contents of the intestines and infectious organisms invade the peritoneal cavity. Peritonitis is a medical emergency.

Can I go for my exercise soon after surgery?

No; it is not advisable to go for any physically exhausting exercises following the surgery until the full recovery and clearance from the doctor. One can take light walk.

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