Appendicitis is inflammation of the appendix. It is one of the most common medical emergencies.
It is widely believed that appendicitis occurs as a result of blockage of the appendix lumen by faeces, tumour, foreign bodies or infection.
- Abdominal pain on the right side of the abdomen
- Pain starting in the upper part or centre of the abdomen before shifting to the right side
- Nausea and vomiting
- Abdominal bloating
- Loss of appetitie
Symptoms of appendicitis can vary widely from patient to patient. This is more so in young children, pregnant women and elderly patients, where symptoms can be atypical.
Early medical advise should be sought as delayed treatment could result in perforation of the appendix. When this happens, the patient becomes very ill from severe infection, known as septicaemia
The best form of treatment for appendicitis is surgery where the inflammed appendix is removed. This is known as an appendicectomy.
Appendicectomy can be performed via:
1. Conventional open method
- Surgical scar at the right lower quadrant of the abdomen
2. Laparoscopic appendicectomy
- Minimally invasive approach through 3 small incisions
In cases where surgery has been delayed, there may be complications such as a collection of pus in the abdominal cavity, or blockage and swelling of the small intestines.