For those of you who have never experience appendicitis or watched family or friends suffer through the pain, appendicitis is no laughing matter. The appendix is about 3-4 inches long that is joined to the large intestine. Unfortunately, with all the great medical breakthroughs scientists and doctors are still unable to identify the use of the appendix (WebMD, 2014).
What is Appendicitis?
Typically affecting people between the ages of 10 and 30, appendicitis is not fun for anyone. The ailment occurs when the appendix becomes blocked by infections, stool, other substance, or cancerous agents. Basically, appendicitis is an inflammation of the appendix organ.
The following symptoms are related to appendicitis, but it is best to consult a medical professional immediately if you suspect the issue (Mayo Clinic, 2014).
- Cannot pass gas
- Constipation or diarrhea
- Dull or sharp pain in the lower right of the abdomen
- High temperature of 99-102.5 degrees Fahrenheit
- Loss of appetite
- Painful urination
- Tenderness in the right abdomen
Appendicitis Treatment and Care
If left untreated, the appendix may rupture or abscess and leak contents of the intestines into the abdominal cavity. This is extremely bad. Called peritonitis, a ruptured appendix can cause infections in the abdominal area because of the infections bacteria in the intestines.
If you cannot sit still or get comfortable when you feel abdominal pain, call your doctor!
The only method of treatment is surgical removal because there is no effective way to test what variety of appendix issue the patient has. Because the appendix is useless to humans – that we know of, removal guarantees no infections or returning symptoms.
In my lifetime, I have met two people who endured this surgery: my high school friend and my young nephew. Both patients were teenagers – 13 and 16.
My high school friend was left with a scar on the right side of his abdomen, but my nephew has no scar at all. Because of the advances in technology and surgical practices, minimally invasive surgery is now available for appendicitis.
Instead of cutting through the abdomen directly above the appendix like my high school friend, surgeons now operate by inserting instruments through the belly button (Ethicon, 2014). My nephew walked away without a scar and barely any pain. Ask your doctor about this option if they do not select it for you.
Have you or someone you know experience appendicitis? Leave your story in the comments below!
Ethicon. (2014). Appendectomy. Retrieved from http://www.smarterpatient.com/patients/health-topics/general-abdominal/mis/appendectomy
Mayo Clinic. (2014). Appendicitis Symptoms. Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/appendicitis/basics/symptoms/con-20023582
WebMD. (2014). Digestive Disorders Health Center: Appendicitis. Retrieved from http://www.webmd.com/digestive-disorders/digestive-diseases-appendicitis