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Appendectomy - Laparoscopic

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Open Appendectomy - Appendix Removal

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Appendectomy - Laparoscopic

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Open Appendectomy - Appendix Removal

Overview

Appendicitis is a condition where the appendix gets inflamed and filled with pus. This causes fever and severe pain near the belly button. If left untreated, the pain may cause discomfort and move toward the lower-right side of the abdomen.

What is the appendix? An appendix is a small pouch attached to the start of the large intestine, where stools form. It is known not to serve any purpose, and removing it has no impact on your health. 

What Is Appendicitis?

When the appendix gets inflamed or filled with pus, causing severe pain (appendicitis), a doctor will recommend removing it. Symptoms include nausea, loss of appetite, vomiting, fever, chills, and pain toward the belly button that extends to the lower abdomen. 

This condition is usually treated with surgery that needs to be done within 24 hours of its diagnosis. Untreated appendicitis can cause infection in the bloodstream (sepsis) and pus formation.

Types of Appendicitis

There are two types of appendicitis, namely ‘acute’ and ‘chronic’. Here’s what you need to know. 

1. Acute Appendicitis:

Acute appendicitis is commonly found among male children and young adults aged 10 to 30. The pain drastically increases within 24 hours, and this type requires immediate medical treatment. It is the most commonly found type of appendicitis and less alarming than chronic appendicitis.

2. Chronic Appendicitis: 

Chronic appendicitis is a rare type and is hard to diagnose because its symptoms show up mild similar to acute appendicitis. Symptoms include pain that can last for months, or even years and can go unnoticed. Consult your doctor for better insight into this type of appendicitis. 

What Causes Appendicitis?

The exact cause of appendicitis is still being studied. Most experts believe this condition is usually caused by a blockage in the appendix, also known as obstruction. 

1. Blocked Appendix

How does it feel when your appendix is blocked? You may have nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, trouble passing gas, and a loss of appetite. These are signs of a blocked appendix. How does a block in your appendix happen? Here are several circumstances that can obstruct your appendix. 

  • Blocked hard stools
  • Intestinal worms
  • Appendix injury
  • Tumor in the appendix
  • Enlarged lymphoid follicles

2. Other Causes

Other than a blocked appendix, other factors that cause appendicitis are as follows

  • Family History: Individuals whose family members have had an appendix are at higher risk of developing it. 
  • Age Factor: Appendicitis can happen to anyone at any age. However, it is commonly found among male children and younger adult males aged 10 to 30. 
  • Sex: Men are at higher risk of developing appendicitis than women.

What Does Appendicitis Pain Feel Like?

Abdominal pain is the most common symptom of appendicitis. The pain may start around the belly button and move towards the lower right side of the abdomen. Sometimes the pain will fade and return with a pinching feeling. You may feel terrible moving, coughing, taking deep breaths, sneezing, or even being touched. 

1. Mild Symptoms

These symptoms may go unnoticed as they suddenly show up or don’t. You need to watch out for these symptoms, as the pain could progress quickly in 12 to 24 hours.

  • Pain surrounding the belly button
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fever
  • Vomiting

2. Severe Symptoms

Appendicitis can worsen as you walk, cough, or make sudden movements. The most noticeable symptoms of appendicitis occur when the condition has progressed. Here are some symptoms of progressed appendicitis.

  • Fever and chills
  • Hard stools
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Pain in the lower-right side of the abdomen

How Is Appendicitis Diagnosed?

A doctor may suspect appendicitis based on the symptoms you describe. However, a physical examination, CT scan, and ultrasound scan of the abdomen will be conducted to diagnose your condition. Here is what a doctor will do to diagnose your condition. 
 

  • Medical History: A doctor will ask if any of your immediate family members have had or have appendicitis. 
  • Physical Examination: A doctor will examine your lower rectum with a gloved hand. He/she will also check for abdominal rigidity by asking you to stiffen your abdominal muscles. This will help your doctor understand if your appendix is inflamed. 
  • Blood Test & Urine Test: A doctor will recommend a complete blood count (CBC) and urine test to check for any signs of infection and inflammation. For this purpose, a blood and urine sample is collected and sent to a lab for analysis.
  • A C-reactive protein test is also done to check if there is abdominal inflammation or any autoimmune disorder. A urine test is done to rule out the possibility of a urinary tract infection and kidney stones that may be causing symptoms similar to appendicitis. 
  • Imaging Tests: A CT scan, abdominal ultrasound abdominal X-ray, and MRI are done to confirm appendicitis. 

How Is Appendicitis Treated?

Surgery performed to treat appendicitis or remove the appendix is called an appendectomy. This surgical procedure involves three different procedures, namely:

1. Open Appendectomy:

A small incision is made in the lower-right side of the belly, and the surgeon removes the appendix. If the appendix bursts, a small tube is inserted to drain pus and other infected fluids in the belly. 

2. Laparoscopic Appendectomy:

In this surgical procedure, several small incisions are made, and a surgical device with a 2D camera on its tip is inserted into the belly and projects the inside onto a TV monitor. The surgeon uses this device to drain out pus if the appendix has burst or remove the appendix as a whole.

3. Robotic Appendectomy:

Similar to a laparoscopic appendectomy, a robotic appendectomy surgery to treat or remove the appendix is done with tiny incisions, inserting a laparoscope with a 3D camera, but the surgeon controls the surgical device from a control room. This avoids the risk of infection and is faster than other surgical procedures. 

What Happens If The Appendix Has Ruptured?

If the appendix has ruptured or burst, you may develop an abscess, a painful pus collection. A surgeon will drain the abscess by inserting a tube through your abdominal wall. This tube is left in place for about two weeks to drain, and your doctor will put you on antibiotics to get rid of the infection.

In some cases where the appendix ruptures, you may need a major abdominal surgery called a laparotomy. In rare cases, mild appendicitis may get better with antibiotics alone. But in most cases, you will need surgery to remove your appendix.

What Happens After Appendix Surgery?

For the first few days post-appendectomy, you may feel pain and bruise, which is normal and reduces with time. You will be given painkillers to fight the pain. 

If you’ve had laparoscopic or robotic appendix surgery, you may feel pain on the tip of your shoulder that will go away in a week. If you’ve had laparoscopic surgery for your appendix, you can return to work anytime within 1 to 3 weeks.

What Are The Complications Of Appendicitis?

If appendicitis is left untreated, it can cause a rupture or an appendix burst. A burst could symbolize the threat of an infection that could turn out to be fatal. Some complications of untreated appendicitis include 

1. Abscess: 

Also known as a pocket of infectious pus that needs to be removed. Your doctor will place drain tubes in your abdomen to remove the pus before appendix surgery. These tubes will be inserted for over a week, and you will be put on antibiotics to fight infection. Appendix surgery will be done only after an abscess is completely drained. 

2. Sepsis: 

Bacteria from an appendix rupture can get into your bloodstream and cause sepsis. Sepsis causes widespread inflammation of many of your organs, and your condition can turn out to be fatal. If you have sepsis due to untreated appendicitis, you will need an immediate hospital stay and medical treatment. 

3. Abdominal Infection: 

If appendicitis is left untreated, it can cause peritonitis, which is an abdominal infection that spreads throughout your abdomen. This is a serious infection and requires a major abdominal surgery called a laparotomy to remove the ruptured appendix.

How To Prevent Appendicitis?

Medically speaking, there are ongoing studies to understand preventive measures for appendicitis. However, one point to note is that eating high-fiber foods can reduce your risk of developing appendicitis. High-fiber foods include

  • Lentils 
  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Beans
  • Split peas
  • Brown rice
  • Whole wheat & whole wheat grains
  • Oatmeal

Why Choose Medfin?

Surgery can be a daunting aspect, and feeling anxious is absolutely normal. The massive amount of information you can get from the internet may confuse you even more. This is where Medfin can help. Leave us the hefty task of finding the best hospital, the finest doctor, and the latest procedure at the lowest cost. Let us take charge while you sit back and focus on your health and recovery. Think surgery! Think Medfin!

The power of Medfin in patient’s words

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“ Got to know about them from my friend. They got an appointment for only 299. Once the doctor confirmed that I needed the surgery they got me a fixed cost which included ALL the costs. No extra amounts were charged. Thank you Medfin”

Suresh Menon Hyderabad 8 days ago
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“ After my consultation with the doctor, MEDFIN representative got me a fixed package cost that included my mothers initial tests, surgery cost. They also gave me stockings free for Rs. 3000 post the surgery. They kept up their promise they made”

Radhika Iyer Mumbai 8 days ago
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“ Thank you Medfin. They ensured the whole process from selecting a very experienced doctor to offering the latest procedure at a very reasonable price. They also arranged a follow up post my surgery with the doctor to ensure my recovery was on track. Thank you for being there throughout”

Deepa Shree Bangalore 8 days ago
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