How to know if your appendix is inflamed
There are many different reasons as to why you might be having stomach pain – and while most of the causes aren’t worrisome, sometimes it could indicate a serious illness like appendicitis.
Appendicitis is an inflammation of the appendix, a thin tube of tissue growing out of the colon. The appendix gets infected when there is a blockage, which could come from bacteria, viruses, fecal matter, parasites or others.
If left untreated, an inflamed appendix can burst and spread its infected contents into the abdominal cavity, increasing risks for potentially fatal infection of the abdominal cavity lining.
Although it is more common among children and young adults, appendicitis can strike anyone of any age. According to general surgeon Diya Alaedeen, ruptured appendixes also happen more often in elderly patients.
Below are the symptoms of appendicitis according to Better Health Channel:
- Dull pain around the navel area that becomes increasingly sharp towards the lower right side of the abdomen
- Pain in the lower back, hamstring or less commonly rectum
- Diarrhoea or constipation
- Appetite loss
The symptoms can appear as early as four hours after the appendix gets inflamed, although they can also appear anywhere within the first 24 to 48 hours.
If you or someone you know may have appendicitis, Healthdirect recommends visiting a doctor as soon as possible. Treatments for the illness include antibiotics and surgery.