Appendicitis in Children

Appendicitis is an infection of the appendix, in which the appendix is so swollen it is dangerous to leave in the body and surgery may be necessary in order to remove the infected organ. If left untreated, the appendix can burst inside the body, releasing bacteria into the stomach cavity that is capable of making the body very sick and possibly causing death to the patient.


Symptoms of Appendicitis in Children

Initial symptoms of appendicitis in older children are: abdominal pain, vomiting, fever, loss of appetite, diarrhea, urinary tract symptoms, constipation and, sometimes, breathing problems.

In younger children(under the age of 3), symptoms seen are usually vomiting and bloated or swollen stomach. Abdominal pain is probable as well, but hard to tell, due to the age of the child and his or her inability to communicate. It is rare to see the presence of appendicitis in that age though.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Appendicitis

It is often difficult to diagnose appendicitis, since its initial symptoms are milder and are shared by many other conditions/illnesses. The only way physicians really have progress in inspecting and diagnosing this condition is by the use of a CT scanning machine, to make sure of a clear diagnosis. Early diagnosis is crucial, since the later symptoms can heighten the danger of further damage to the patient.

Treatment entails surgery to remove the infected organ from the body, but first off your child's physician will perform a full body examination, sometimes with blood and urine tests. X-rays may be performed as well. After the surgery, the doctor will administer intravenous antibiotics to your child to aid in the healing process. If all goes well, your child will be back on his or her feet in no time.

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