Appendicitis: Causes, symptoms and treatment

Appendicitis: Causes, symptoms and treatment


Appendicitis: Causes, symptoms, and treatment

Appendicitis occurs as an inflammation of the appendix. Once your appendix becomes inflamed and filled with mucus, the health disorder called appendicitis set in. The appendix presents as a narrow tube-like finger shaped organ that is attached to the walls of your intestines, and it is found on the lower right-hand side of your abdomen. When this tube-like organ (appendix) becomes blocked, it gets inflamed thus resulting in appendicitis. This health trouble can be in an acute or chronic form depending on its stage.

According to research, this abnormality which is one of the most frequent root causes of pains in the lower abdomen which results in surgery is experienced by multiple thousands of people annually at some point in their lives, usually once in a lifetime.

This ailment as stated earlier requires emergency surgery to remove it. Drugs are at times administered to suppress it or provide remediation. Although, not all persons might experience this discomfort or disorder in their entire life. You might be among the lucky people just like myself. Smiles.

However, If appendicitis becomes very severe and is left untreated, it possibly can result in your appendix bursting and releasing some toxic bacteria into your abdominal cavity, which might cause some fatal complications, severe discomfort, or even death.

As you read on, you will learn about this inflammatory condition of the appendix.


Some other facts about appendix

1.The major role or importance of this worm-like tubular appendage attached to the cecum of the colon has not to be discovered over time.

2. The appendix extends from the large intestine, located at the lower right-hand side of the abdomen with a length of three and a half inches.

3. Appendicitis occurs to individuals of all ages, but usually at teen ages and twenties.

4. Treatment for appendicitis requires the removal of the appendix before it ruptures and spills bacteria all over the abdominal cavity.

5. Appendicitis usually results in abdominal pains which most times are mistaken for other abdominal conditions like a pelvic disease. Therefore, it is ideal you see the doctor whenever you feel this discomfort.



Types of appendicitis

This inflammatory sensation of the appendix is in two stages which are the acute and the chronic type. There are the simple and complex stages where antibiotics or other medications can suppress it or the stage where the appendix ruptures or abscesses while will require surgery(appendectomy) respectively.

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According to Robert Tuttle Morris, M.D. of New York. Appendicitis is classified into four kinds which are;

1.Syncongestive Appendicitis

2. Extrinsic Infective Appendicitis

3. Acute Intrinsic Infective Appendicitis

4. Appendicitis Irritanio



Appendicitis which is the inflammation of the appendix is thought to begin as a result of the blockage of the opening from the appendix into the cecum of the colon of the intestine. This could be as a result of the thick pus built up within the appendix. The pus becomes harden like a stone(fecalith) and impedes the opening of the cecum.

This could also occur as a result of swelling of the lymphatic tissue inside the appendix which blocks the cecum. When this blockage happens, bacteria which are normally found in the appendix starts multiplying and infect the wall of the appendix. The human system then responds to this infection by fighting off the bacteria. This pressure mounted on the wall of the appendix is what is referred to as inflammation.

The causal agents of appendicitis are lymphadenitis, bezoars, intestinal worms, foreign bodies, trauma, intestinal worms, and most often calcified fecal deposits known as appendicoliths or fecaliths. Bacteria, fungi, parasites, and viruses, are also possible casual organisms that can trigger this infection which leads to appendicitis. Adenovirus, Yersinia species, Mycobacteria species, Strongyloides, Schistosoma species, pinworms, actinomycosis, and Histoplasma species are the major infecting organisms. Appendicitis may also be caused by Crohn’s disease.

At times when the signs of appendicitis are mistaken for something else and the inflammatory pressure builds up, the appendix might rupture and bacteria spill from it to the cavities. The rupture of the appendix could be a result of the built-up pressures or inflammation on the walls of the appendix. Although the main cause has not been known yet.



The inflammation of the appendix known as appendicitis always starts with an undefined discomfort and pain around the middle of the abdomen usually on the right-hand side of the naval. The discomfort is diffused at first and not confined to a particular spot. This pain at times is usually accompanied by other symptoms like vomiting, fever, nausea, loss of appetite for food, and abdominal tenderness. These signs at times occur singly or there might be a combination of these symptoms.

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For these signs to occur, it takes some hours to develop at times. The victim might experience things like indigestion, diarrhea during this time. It is usually difficult to detect early signs of appendicitis, as a lot of people mistake it for normal gastroenteritis when admitted to the hospital.

Early signs of appendicitis are usually mild, consisting of loss of appetite and then abdominal pains. Abdominal pain is the major sign of this illness, this is why teenagers are fast enough to recognize appendicitis symptoms while kids and older adults usually have less or are unable to properly describe the signs. The inability for it to be described makes it complicated for diagnosis.

However, other health conditions are likely to present as appendicitis if not properly diagnosed. They are; kidney disease, celiac disease, gallbladder disease, pelvic inflammation, ectopic pregnancy, liver disease, diverticulitis, Crohn’s disease, and ulcer.


Here are the signs of symptoms of appendicitis simplified;

1. Initial discomforting pain in the lower right-hand side of the abdomen.

2. Loss of appetite for food.

3. Difficulty in farthing or weeing.

4. Low fever

5. Indigestion

6. Mild or severe pains around the right side of your abdomen.

7. Vomiting and nausea

8. Swollen stomach



Diagnosing appendicitis is based on the person’s medical history and some physical examination supported by an increase of neutrophilic WBCs. Here are the various types of diagnosis.

1. Blood and urine diagnosis

2. Clinical diagnosis

3. Ultrasound

4. Computed tomography

5. Imaging

6. Scoring system

7. Differential diagnosis

8. Pathology

9. Magnetic resonance imaging

10. X-ray



Just like stated above, some persons are lucky not to experience these pains throughout their lifetime while others have the kind of body that can contain it without having to go through an operation(surgery) where the infection and pressure rupture the appendix. In older patients, the pains of inflammation and the symptoms tend to dissolve when some antibiotics are taken.

This case is usually treated most times using antibiotics, self-care, or remedy, and also undergoing a procedure or two to remove the appendix and or evacuate abscess(as a result of accumulated mucus). It is most times treated as an emergency to avoid serious complications and death. The surgical procedure carried out to remove the appendix is termed appendectomy.

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The three treatment methods for appendicitis are;

  •  Surgery

Surgical treatment for appendicitis includes appendectomy, laparotomy, and laparoscopy. There are procedures which involve removal of the appendix, surgical openings made in the abdomen to check and treat the appendix and some other abdominal related infection, and the surgery that employs the use of a video camera and thin tubes which are dipped into the cut made through the body to treat and evacuate appendix.


  •  Medication

This involves the use of some antibiotics and penicillin to treat appendicitis. Antibiotics like gentamicin, invent, zosyn, vimentin, maximize, Merriam, Josephine, and others are used to stop and kill the growth of causal agents. While clean, Claforan and others are used to stop and kill a selected causal bacterial, heal and prevent injuries caused by infection.


  • Self-care

This deals with personal habits especially based on food consumption. Abstaining from food and drink during or after this occurrence can help in treating appendicitis.



Poor handling of appendicitis can lead to severe harm and sometimes death. When the appendix is opened in your belly, harmful bacteria are spilled into the cavity which can result in severe complications.

This guide is prepared to help you understand appendix and appendicitis(inflammation of the appendix) and also the risks involved. However, this article does not stop you from seeing the doctor whenever you feel the pains described in this guide.

Ensure you see the doctor if the symptoms of appendicitis are noticed or persist.


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