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Appendicitis

Written and reviewed by
Dr. Chetan B. Mahajan 91% (112 ratings)
MBBS, MS - General Surgery , DNB (General Surgery), MNAMS (Membership of the National Academy), Fellow HPB Surgery & Liver Transplant (Singapore) , FICS - RPSLH - RPSLH
Gastroenterologist, Hyderabad  •  23 years experience
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Here are health-related tips of Appendicitis

Hello friends! Now I am going to talk about an entity about which way you and everyone has been hearing since our childhood an ‘’Appendicitis’’, and Appendicectomy, an operation for that. We all hear this thing right since our childhood. It is one of the most commonly affecting disease in general population whether it is male or female. The incidence is right from the first decade of the age and it goes on till almost 50, 55 years. Thankfully, the appendicectomy after late fifties is not much and therefore the population below fifty is definitely vulnerable for it. Why we see a lot of patients with appendicitis nowadays? I think one of the reason is our bad to worse lifestyle. Less water intake, constipating foods like all junk and fast foods, absence or minimal presence of green leafy vegetables, vegetables in general, a sedentary lifestyle and so and so forth are all the factors which induce constipation and situations even like appendicitis.

We see a lot of children who have gained a lot of weight, thanks to the food habits. And this also is one section of the society in which we see a lot of appendicitis. How does a patient feel? How does a patient present with appendicitis? Well the cardinal, most important thing is pain, severe pain usually starting from the middle of your tummy and ,then probably in sometime, over a period of 12 to 24 hours, localizing to the right lower side of your abdomen, wherein it will remain constant. The pain can be quite unnerving needing immediate medications, injections, sometimes even hospital admission and this will be associated with lot of dyspepsia, nausea, in some patients even severe vomiting. This is one of the most classical way in which appendix presents and it is also called as Acute Appendicitis.

Well we have a small section of patients where all these dramatic symptoms may not be there and patients may complain mainly of dyspepsia, fullness of tummy, bloating, especially after eating food. Few hours after consuming the food pain will be dragging sometimes dull sometimes severe, but we will keep localizing to the right lower quadrant of the right lower side of the abdomen. Appendicitis is a clinical diagnosis which a doctor makes after examining the patient. We see a lot of patients coming to us with CT scans, ultrasonic abdomen, MRI and things like that. Trust me in even 21st century the best diagnosis for appendicitis is made by clinician, a doctor who examines the patients and thereby a lot of appendicitis patients, they don't need CT scans and things like that, unless and until a complication has happened or we are dealing with something else or there is a diagnostic dilemma.

So what does a patient need to have? Well he needs to have some basic blood tests that complete blood picture. We also need to show and be sure that there is no urinary tract infection especially in young women and thereby we also ask for a urine examination. In young fertile or what we call as, you know menstruating age group women, we need to be very sure about the genic history and things like that. Before we come to a diagnosis, an ultrasound helps in appendicitis as a way what we call by diagnosis by exclusion wherein exclude that there is no right kidney stone, There is no right electric stone and in women the right ovary and fallopian tubes are clean, but mainly and I would reinforces is this that appendicitis still demands a clinical diagnosis.

All the investigations which we do, they aid the diagnosis they don't make the diagnosis really. The second important factor is appendicitis can be dramatic and can present with complications like number 1 ,wherein a patient who is having abdominal pain will suddenly become sick ,his pulse rate will go and start having high grade fever and so and so forth. The pain will not be relieved by any analgesic. Conventionally, you should always suspect a perforation of appendix. Likewise a patient can also present to us with what we call as an appendicular abscess, wherein it has perforated and there is a nice pus collection around the appendix. So a small disease ignored at that particular time can present to us in a very dramatic way and with a lot of complications. Well the treatment of appendicitis in one sentence is an appendicectomy an operation. All the medicines which are used to treat appendicitis or associated conditions will give a temporary relief, will alleviate the pain for some time, will reduce the infection, but will not take away the problem. I strongly recommend that a simple operation is the best remedy. This surgery can also be done by conventional method, an open surgery or a laparoscopic method. And appendicitis is a situation which can grow from simple to bad and worse within no time. Thereby, don't waste time, try and seek and early treatment. Number 2, don't get feared by the fact that you will need an operation, because in the final run a simply done timely nice operation will save you from all the possible complications and the drama you go through.

Thereby I request you to make use of me through this wonderful medium or you are free to consult me at my consultation rooms at your wish and will. Thank you.

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