WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT APPENDICITIS

 

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This is an infection or inflammation of the appendix usually due to an obstruction in the appendix. The appendix is an organ that is part of the gastrointestinal tract and is present in the lower right side of the abdomen attached to the large intestine. While the appendix is believed to contain some tissue that helps the immune system fight infections in the body, it has no vital function and it is possible to live a normal and healthy life without it.

If the appendix becomes inflamed or infected, it requires immediate treatment because if left untreated, the appendix can rupture and this can lead to the release of bacteria and other substances into the abdominal cavity and thus, becomes life threatening.

 

CAUSES OF APPENDICITIS

The main cause of appendicitis is yet to be known but it is believed that appendicitis develops when part of the appendix becomes blocked or inflamed. The following are various factors that can increase the risk of appendicitis:

1. Intestinal worms
2. Tumours
3. Hardened stools
4. High consumption of food low in fibre

SYMPTOMS OF APPENDICITIS

1. Intensifying pain in the lower right side of the abdomen

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2. Indigestion


3. Nausea

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4. Vomiting
5. Abdominal swelling

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6. Constipation

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7. Inability to pass gas

8. Fever
9. Loss of appetite
10. Diarrhoea 

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TREATMENT OF APPENDICITIS

When you meet your doctor, he or she will perform a physical exam on you and ask different questions about your symptoms. You will be asked to undergo some tests like urine tests, blood tests and an abdominal ultrasound. If you’re diagnosed with appendicitis, you will have to undergo a surgical procedure called an APPENDECTOMY, the removal of the appendix.

Surgical removal of vermiform appendix(Photo by Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

You will be given some medications like pain relievers, antibiotics before and after the surgery.

After the surgery, there are different home remedies that can help to hasten and aid your recovery. They are:

1. Lots of rest and naps

Photocredit:gettyimages.com.                                         2. Consumption of plenty water

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3. Avoid strenuous activity like lifting of heavy objects

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4. Go for a low intensity and short distance stroll or walk daily

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5. Ensure that you keep your surgical incision sites clean and dry everyday

 

6. Ensure you take your medications as prescribed by the doctor

 

PREVENTION OF APPENDICITIS

Appendicitis can’t be totally prevented but it is possible to lower the risk of developing it by eating food rich in fibre.

Foods that are high in fibre include:

1. Fruits
2. Vegetables
3. Grains like oatmeal, rice, wheat
4. Beans, peas, legumes

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Note: Appendicitis can affect anyone but it happens mostly in people that are between the ages of 15 and 30 years. It also occurs more in males than in female.