Appendicitis In Children and Adults

How Does Appendicitis Differ In Children & Adults?

As explained earlier, an appendix may rupture, perforate or burst, even in young children and infants. Children may have the classic symptom of abdominal pain starting around the belly button, and moving downwards and to the right. Unfortunately, there is no certain way to predict who will get appendicitis, and when it will happen. If a doctor decides to perform a surgery and remove the appendix, it carries its own risk just as any other surgical procedure for a child. Usually other symptoms such as fever, nausea, and poor appetite are not always found in children; hence, one might mistake this pain as a general stomach ache or easily confuse it with other conditions. Just because a child does not have the traditional symptoms does not mean there is no chance of appendicitis. If children complain of any kind of abdominal pain, it is wise not to take it lightly. Children may have other complaints as well, such as hip pain felt while walking and moderate to high fever. Although the occurrence of appendicitis is low in children under 5 years of age, the risk keeps increasing for school-going children and teens. Delay in diagnosis increases the chance of perforation.. It is commonly misunderstood to be gastroenteritis, pneumonia, urinary tract infection, or bowel related problems.

According to the National Institute of Health, appendicitis is most common between the age groups of 10 to 30, and is more prevalent in men. In adults you will find that the pain starts all of a sudden and continues over a period of time. There is no cure for appendicitis; once it is inflamed it needs to be removed as soon as possible through surgery. The appendix needs to be divided from its connection to the colon, and its blood supply needs to be cut; after that, it is completely removed from the gut region. A Computed Tomography, or CT scan can help in early detection of appendicitis and is usually done only for adults. This is because it is much more accurate in adults; additionally, children and pregnant women should not be exposed to radiation. In adult patients, the risk of developing post-operative complications heightens with time; therefore, there should be no delay in surgery.

Is Appendicitis During Pregnancy Common?

Appendicitis may occur in anyone at any time without prior warning. The symptoms of appendicitis are very similar to pregnancy symptoms – nausea, stomach cramps and loss of appetite are often experienced. Many women also feel false labor pain when it comes to pregnancy; all these reasons make it difficult to diagnose appendicitis in pregnant women. Sometimes, such a condition may lead to complications, not only for the mother but also for the child, especially in early stages of pregnancy. Another clinical limitation for pregnancy is that radiological examinations are usually not done, as the effects of radiology are potentially dangerous to the fetus. Acute appendicitis in pregnant women, especially when perforation or peritonitis occurs. usually leads to premature labor and other complications. A detailed examination is usually advised in order to determine the exact nature of these symptoms. The patient needs to contact the gynecologist at the earliest signs, as there may be complications that will prove hazardous for both the mother and the baby. Surgical removal of the inflamed appendix without delay prevents any further complexities from arising and is most recommended by doctors.

If you are experiencing such pain, get admitted to a hospital, and do not leave the hospital until the possibility of appendicitis is completely ruled out. If you are diagnosed with appendicitis, you need to get treated immediately. This is crucial for you and the baby’s well being.


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