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Appendicitis

It is also called epityphlitis. It is an inflammation of the inner lining of the vermiform


appendix that spreads to its other parts
This condition is a common and urgent surgical illness with protein manifestations,
generous overlap with other clinical syndromes

Cause

Appendicitis is caused by a blockage of the hollow portion of the appendix, most


commonly by a calcified stone made of feces. This blockage leads to increased
pressures within the appendix, decreased blood flow to the tissues of the appendix, and
bacterial growth inside the appendix causing inflammation
The combination of inflammation, reduced blood flow to the appendix and distention of
the appendix causes tissue injury and tissue death
Based on some experimental evidence, acute appendicitis seems to be the end result of a
primary obstruction of the appendiceal lumen. Once this obstruction occurs, the appendix
becomes filled with mucus and swells. This continued production of intra-lumenal mucus
leads to increased pressures within the lumen and the walls of the appendix

Risk Factors

There are no proven risk factors for appendicitis. It has been suggested that potential risk
factors may include a diet low in fiber and high in sugar, family history, and infection.

Symptoms

Dull pain near the navel or the upper abdomen that becomes sharp as it moves to the
lower right abdomen
Loss of appetite
Nausea and/or vomiting soon after abdominal pain begins
Abdominal swelling
Fever of 99-102 degrees Fahrenheit
Inability to pass gas

Almost half of the time, other symptoms of appendicitis appear, including:

Dull or sharp pain anywhere in the upper or lower abdomen, back, or rectus
Painful urination
Vomiting that precedes the abdominal pain
Severe cramps

Constipation or diarrhea with gas

Treatment

There is a surgery to remove the appendix; which, is called an appendectomy, is the


standard treatment for appendicitis
Generally, if appendicitis is suspected, doctors tend to lend to err on the side of safety and
quickly remove the appendix to avoid its rupture
Antibiotics on the other hand can cause confusion in the diagnosis of appendicitis. One of
the features of a patient with appendicitis is the evolving history and examination. This
can be masked by the use of antibiotics and so antibiotics should not be given as a matter
of course.

Prognosis

Most persons with appendicitis recover easily after surgical treatment, but complications
can occur if treatment is delayed or if peritonitis occurs. Recovery time depends on age,
condition, but usually between 10 to 28 days. For young children (around 10 years old),
the recovery takes three weeks
Typical acute appendicitis records quickly to appendectomy and occasionally will resolve
spontaneously. If it does, it remains controversial whether an elective interval
appendectomy should be performed to prevent a recurrent episode of appendicitis.
Atypical appendicitis (associated with suppurative appendicitis) is more difficult to
diagnose and is more apt to be complicated even when operated early. In either condition,
prompt diagnosis and appendectomy yield the best results with full recovery in two to
four weeks usually
Mortality and severe complications are unusual but do not occur, especially if peritonitis
persists and is untreated. Another entity known as appendicular lump is talked about quite
often. It happens when the appendix is not removed early during infection and
momentum and intestine adhere to it, forming a palpable lamp.
An unusual complication of an appendectomy is stump appendicitis. Inflammation
occurs in the remnant appendiceal stump left after a prior incomplete appendectomy

Prevention

There is no way of predicting when appendicitis will occur or prevent it from occurring

References

Dastur, N. (2007). Appendicitis. Retrieved from http://www.surgeons.org.uk/general-surgery


tutorials/appendicitis.html
Whittaker, D. K. (1992). Obturator hernia: an elusive diagnosis, vol. 65. Retrieved from
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1293615/pdf/jrsocmed00108-0086c.pdf
Appendicitis (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.org/invoke.cfm
Cunha, J. P., Stoppler, M. S., & Anand, B. (2014). Appendicitis prognosis. Retrieved from
http://www.emedicinehealth.com/appendicitis/page10_em.htm