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Appendicitis is an acute inflammation of the vermiform appendix, occurs in 5% of the


population, peaking among young adults, especially men. It is the most common cause
of right lower quadrant pain. The appendix usually extends off the proximal cecum of
the colon just below the ileocecal valve. Inflammation occurs when the lumen (opening)
of the appendix is obstructed (blocked), leading to infection as bacteria invade the wall
of the appendix. The initial obstruction is usually a result of fecaliths (very hard pieces
of feces) composed calcium phosphate-rich mucus and inorganic salts. Less common
causes are malignant tumors, worms, or other infections.

(Ignatavicius, Donna, MS, RN, ANEF. Medical-Surgical Nursing. Saunders Elsevier Inc.
St. Louis, Missouri.
Copyright© 2010. Pp.1316-1317.)

Appendicitis (inflammation of the appendix) is the most common reason for emergency
abdominal surgery in the United States. The appendix is the right lower quadrant region
at Mcburney¶s point. Its function is not fully understood, but it regularly fills with and
empties digested food. Appendicitis is the most common in adolescents and young
adults and is slightly more common in males than females.

( Burke, Karen M., RN, MS. Medical-Surgical Nursing Care. Second Edition. Copyright©
2007 by Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey. Pp.443-444.)

Appendicitis, is the most common cause of acute abdomen and the most common
reason for emergency abdominal surgery. About 7% of the population will have
appendicitis at some time in their lives; males are affected more than females,
teenagers more than adults. Although it can occur at any time at any age, it occurs most
frequently between the ages of 10 and 30 years. In Canada, appendicitis is the leading
digestive disease resulting hospitalization.

( Day,Rene A, et al. Texbook of Medical-Surgical Nursing. First Canadian Edition.


Copyright© 2007 by Lippincotts Williams and Wilkins. Philadelphia. Page 1039)
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Appendicitis is an inflammation of the appendix, a 3 1/2-inch-long tube of tissue that
extends from the large intestine. No one is absolutely certain what the function of the
appendix is. One thing we do know: We can live without it, without apparent
consequences.
Appendicitis is a medical emergency that requires prompt surgery to remove the
appendix. Left untreated, an inflamed appendix will eventually burst, or perforate,
spilling infectious materials into the abdominal cavity. This can lead to peritonitis, a
serious inflammation of the abdominal cavity's lining (the peritoneum) that can be fatal
unless it is treated quickly with strong antibiotics.
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Sometimes a pus-filled abscess (infection that is walled off from the rest of the body)
forms outside the inflamed appendix. Scar tissue then "walls off" the appendix from the
rest of the abdomen, preventing infection from spreading. An abscessed appendix is a
less urgent situation, but unfortunately, it can't be identified without surgery. For this
reason, all cases of appendicitis are treated as emergencies, requiring surgery.

(http://www.webmd.com/digestive-disorders/digestive-diseases-appendicitis)

Appendicitis means inflammation of the appendix. It is thought that appendicitis begins


when the opening from the appendix into the cecum becomes blocked. The blockage
may be due to a build-up of thick mucus within the appendix or to stool that enters the
appendix from the cecum. The mucus or stool hardens, becomes rock-like, and blocks
the opening. This rock is called a fecalith (literally, a rock of stool). At other times, the
lymphatic tissue in the appendix might swell and block the appendix. After the blockage
occurs, bacteria which normally are found within the appendix begin to invade (infect)
the wall of the appendix. The body responds to the invasion by mounting an attack on
the bacteria, an attack called inflammation. An alternative theory for the cause of
appendicitis is an initial rupture of the appendix followed by spread of bacteria outside of
the appendix. The cause of such a rupture is unclear, but it may relate to changes that
occur in the lymphatic tissue, for example, inflammation, that lines the wall of the
appendix.)
If the inflammation and infection spread through the wall of the appendix, the appendix
can rupture. After rupture, infection can spread throughout the abdomen; however, it
usually is confined to a small area surrounding the appendix (forming a peri-
appendiceal abscess).

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

ABSCESS

An abscess is a collection of pus which is a dead neutrophils that has accumulated in a


cavity formed by the tissue in which the pus resides on the basis of
an infectious process (usually caused by bacteria or parasites) or other foreign
materials (e.g., splinters, bullet wounds, or injecting needles). It is a defensive
reaction of the tissue to prevent the spread of infectious materials to other parts of the
body.
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The organisms or foreign materials kill the local cells, resulting in the release
of cytokines. The cytokines trigger an inflammatory response, which draws large
numbers of white blood cells to the area and increases the regional blood flow.

The final structure of the abscess is an abscess wall, or capsule, that is formed by the
adjacent healthy cells in an attempt to keep the pus from infecting neighboring
structures. However, such encapsulation tends to prevent immune cells from attacking
bacteria in the pus, or from reaching the causative organism or foreign object.

Abscesses must be differentiated from empyemas, which are accumulations of pus in a


pre-existing rather than a newly formed anatomical cavity.

(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abscess)

Abscess is a localized collection of pus that generally develops in response toinfection.


An abscess is typically painful, and it appears as a swollen area that is warm to the
touch. The skin surrounding an abscess typically appears pink or red.
Abscesses can develop in many parts of the body, but they usually involve the skin
surface. Common sites affected include the armpits, groin, rectal area (perirectal
abscess), the external vaginal area (Bartholin's abscess), and along the tailbone
(pilonidal abscess). Abscesses can also affect the brain, kidneys, liver
(hepaticabscess), lungs, teeth (dental abscess), and tonsils (peritonsillar
abscess).Inflammation surrounding hair follicles can lead to the formation of abscesses.
Skin abscesses are often referred to as boils.

(http://www.emedicinehealth.com/abscess/article_em.htm)